5 Common Facebook Ad Mistakes and How to Fix Them

- by Alyson Shane

Want better results from your Facebook ads? Then you’ve come to the right place! Today, we’re covering five Facebook Ads mistakes you may be making and how to fix them.

Why Advertise on Facebook

Facebook is still one of the most useful and cost-effective ways to reach your target audience. With 2 billion monthly active users and a powerful targeting system, Facebook Ads help businesses generate brand awareness, drive conversions, and increase sales.

Not only does Facebook offer sophisticated targeting, but a study by Wordstream found that the average cost per click for a Facebook Ad in 2019 was $1.72, meaning you can reach hundreds of thousands of potential customers without a huge budget.

Here are a few more reasons why you should be advertising on Facebook:

You don’t need to be a pro to get started

Facebook Ads can feel intimidating, especially once you start digging into Business Manager, Ads Manager, Creative Hub, and the wide range of targeting options available to you. That's normal, believe us.

Luckily, you can start experimenting with Facebook Ads right from your Page before jumping into all the options behind-the-scenes. Try clicking on a recent post and click on the "Boost Post" button to start running your first ad!

Facebook Ads offer high ROI

Facebook is one of the biggest advertising channels on the internet, with total spending from the United States, alone totalling almost 9.9 billion U.S. dollars. There's a good reason for it: the average Facebook user clicks on 11 ads per month, or a total of one ad every three days.

While this may not seem like a huge number, remember that not all ads need a click to be considered effective — some campaigns are designed solely for brand awareness and aren't tied to a "click" as their metric of success. In fact, Reach on Facebook is higher than ever, and with impressions going up and costs going down, there's never been a better time to invest in Facebook marketing.

This stat also shows that users engage with and pay attention to ads on Facebook instead of tuning them out.

Facebook Ads are highly customizable

Facebook Ads offer a wide range of ad types, display options, and audience targeting to help your ad get be to your ideal audience. You can customize your ad design, copy, landing pages, how you spend your budget, audience targeting, and lots more.

For example, if you're a thrift shop solisticing donations you can create a short video ad asking for donated items and target it at people who live in your neighbourhood. Or, you could creat a single-image ad promoting an upcoming sale or special event. The possibilities are really endless, which is what makes Facebook Ads such a valuable tool in your digital marketing aresenal.

Now that we’ve covered why Facebook advertising is important, let’s dive into the five most common mistakes people make when creating Facebook Ads, and how to fix them:

Facebook Ads Mistake #1: Your Ads Aren’t Backed By a Strategy

The biggest Facebook Ads mistake businesses make is launching ad campaigns without a strategy.

This tends to happen because, as we mentioned above, anyone can set up and run a Facebook Ad if they manage a Business Page on the platform. 

Unfortunately, running ads without a strategy that takes elements like your budget, audience, targeting, and conversion goals into consideration will waste your budget.

The Three Stages of the Facebook Ads Funnel

There are three stages to a successful Facebook ad funnel:

  • Level 1: Awareness
  • Level 1 Remarketing (engagement marketing)
  • Level 2 Remarketing (website remarketing)

Awareness

The goal of these ads is to generate awareness about your business. Running ads at this stage builds credibility and authority for your brand, which is important for moving users through later stages of the funnel.

Ads at this stage should be educational or entertaining, and should position your brand in a friendly, knowledgeable way. Content-based ads like video work great here, and allow you to pull the people who engaged with your video into a new custom audience as you move to the next stage of the funnel.

Engagement remarketing

The goal at this stage is to drive people from Facebook to your website to learn more about a product or service and, ideally, make a purchase.

The best content for engagement remarketing ads is a special offer, promotion, or discount. Free trials, BOGO (buy one get one), and percentage-based discounts all work great at this stage.

Website remarketing

The final stage of the Facebook Ads Funnel is website remarketing. Here, we "retarget" our ads at people who have viewed a specific product or page on our website to drive sales and generate more leads.

Remarketing ads act as “reminders” and increase conversion and engagement with people who have already shown an interest in your brand.

The best content at this stage is ads that add social proof, like testimonials. You can also test sales and promotions that create a sense of urgency and encourage users to take action right away.

Facebook Ads Mistake #2: Using Truncated Descriptions

Another common Facebook ad mistake is ignoring the character limits in your ads. The main reason this happens is businesses running ads don’t update the news feed or carousel card description.

Facebook will automatically pull a description from the destination URL you set for your ad, so it’s important to be deliberate when planning your carousel card and news feed link descriptions to make sure they don’t get cut off.

If your descriptions are too long Facebook will cut them off (truncate them), resulting in ads that look incomplete.

Losing part of your text muddles your ad messaging, looks unprofessional and hurts the effectiveness of your ads.

Protip: the easiest way to make sure your ad text isn’t truncated is to check the mobile news feed preview to see how your ad will look on users’ phones.

Facebook Ads Mistake #3: You “Set and Forget” Your Ads

The third biggest mistake we’ve seen brands make is taking a “set it and forget it” approach to their Facebook ads by not checking in and managing their ads once they’ve started delivering.

A “set it and forget it” attitude hurts your campaign performance, since you won’t be able to identify any issues with your ads and make adjustments based on how it's delivering.

Some examples include:

  • Your Facebook audience has ad fatigue. “Ad fatigue” happens when people who’ve seen the same ad creative too many times stop paying attention to it.
  • Your cost-per-click (CPC) is too high. Your cost-per-click is an indicator of how well your campaign is performing. Read more about how to keep Facebook Ad cost-per-clicks (CPCs) low here.

In both of these cases we’d want to take action by updating the ad creative, ad copy, our campaign objective, audience targeting, and our call-to-action (CTA).

Facebook Ads Mistake #4: Underutilizing Facebook Remarketing

Remarketing ads are essential for seeing the highest return-on-investment (ROI) for your efforts.

These ads target people who have visited your website before and act as “reminders” to encourage users to return and convert.

The key to being successful here is to make sure your ads don’t continue to target people who haven’t visited your website in a while. Using a 3-5 day duration and setting the engagement condition of All Website Visitors, excluding purchases, means you won't miss out on the chance to connect with a single user.

Facebook Ads Mistake #5: Using Mismatched Lookalike Audiences

If you haven’t used these powerful targeting options before, it’s time to start using Facebook lookalike audiences in your ad campaigns.

Lookalike audiences are the most advanced audience types on Facebook. These audience types help you find new potential customers who share similar characteristics to a source audience, like a customer list or website traffic.

The biggest mistake businesses make when setting up lookalikes is not using a high-quality source audience. When setting up your lookalikes, use either your customer database (creating a “customer file” custom audience) or use a website custom audience.

Protip: Creating lookalike audiences is more effective when you have at least 1000 people in your source audience. If you don’t have enough you can use your website traffic, engaged page followers, and page likes to create lookalike audiences as well.

Common Facebook Ad Mistakes: Conclusion

With the Coronavirus pandemic affecting businesses across the globe, the demand for digital advertising has never been higher or more competitive.

As a result, Facebook continues to introduce new features, targeting updates, and new processes that make it more challenging for newbie marketers and businesses to stay up-to-date with the latest Facebook Ad best practices.

By avoiding the common Facebook Ad mistakes outlined above, businesses can enjoy a high return-on-investment from their Facebook ads, build brand awareness, and increase conversions and revenue.

Are you worried you may be making a Facebook Ad mistake? Get in touch and let us know how we can help.