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Facebook advertising can help you develop your company, generate leads, and increase sales of your product or service. It can be an excellent promotional tool, with major advantages in terms of raising brand awareness and growing sales. However, some common Facebook ad mistakes can affect your desired results and optimization rate.

In this post, we are going to go through some of these mistakes that marketers make when running Facebook ads and how to fix them. 

Want to get better results from any ad campaign you launch? 

Read on to discover 7 common mistakes to avoid when running Facebook ads and how you can fix them…

Common Facebook Ad Mistakes

#1 Not choosing the right campaign objective

Every Facebook ad starts with having an objective. Your objective is your ‘why’ for running the ad and is what helps Facebook know how to optimise an ad campaign. 

Here is how it works: when you select a campaign objective, Facebook will show your ads to the people most likely to perform the action you specified. 

For example, if you need people to download an app and you select the ‘app install’ option, Facebook will show that ad to people that are more likely to do so from past experiences. 

When it comes to Facebook ads, one of the most popular errors marketers make is choosing the wrong campaign objective. Even if you have a compelling copy and are targeting the right audience, not having the right campaign objective can greatly affect the results you get.

So, you see, you cannot afford to be random with your campaign objective. With the right objective, you can reach the right people and achieve a more targeted result.  

Now, how do you select a campaign objective that is right for you and your client’s business? 

Here are some questions you should be asking;

  1. What stage of the funnel is my audience at? 

Any digital marketing expert knows that you cannot afford to provide the same offer to your audience without first considering what stage of the sales funnel they are at. 

The sales funnel is a step-by-step process where you lead your customer from the point where they are aware of your brand to the point where they become paying customers. Customers at each stage of the funnel are looking for different things. It then makes sense that the message that sells with a customer at the consideration stage might not produce as much result with a customer that’s not yet aware of your business. 

Source: The good ‘B2C Marketers’

To select a campaign objective, you have to pick one that best suits the funnel stage of your target audience. 

Facebook has made it easier by grouping the 11 campaign objectives into 3 categories, based on the customer’s journey. 

Awareness

The awareness objective is for marketers who want to show their brand to new customers. Whether you’re a big company or a small startup, the awareness objective is what helps people know about your brand and what you offer. 

Now, the goal here is not to make sales. Instead, the aim is to ensure that people know and associate your brand with a particular product or service. It is also used to remind existing customers of your brand. 

Here are the objectives you can use under the awareness stage: 

Brand awareness: This objective is great when you are trying to make more people aware of your business. It is mostly used by any business trying to target new customers at the awareness stage of the funnel. If you are trying to connect with people who have never interacted with your brand before, this can be a great choice. 

Reach: Do you need to reach as many people as possible? Well, this is a great objective for that. It is used when the goal is to show an ad to a broad audience. When you select the reach as your campaign objective, Facebook will optimise your budget by bringing your ad to as many people as your budget allows.

Note: If your goal is to get people to engage with your ad, this might not be a great option. But if you just want to get many eyes on your ads, you should definitely use reach as your campaign objective.

Consideration

Trying to get your audience to become more familiar with your brand? This is your best bet. At the consideration stage, you have moved past just wanting to introduce your business. At this point, you want people to start thinking of your business and searching for information relating to it. This is where you begin to educate your audience about your brand and help them differentiate between yours and other competitors. 

In simple terms, your goal is to build a deeper relationship with your audience. 

With Facebook ads, you can choose one of the 6 objectives under the consideration stage: 

Traffic: Do you have a website, a specific landing page or an app and need to drive people to it? Traffic is your go-to objective for this purpose. It is used by marketers to:

  • Send people to a location (website or app) outside Facebook
  • Increase website or app clicks
  • Provide users with more information about a product, service or event.

With a traffic objective, you can target new people and also retarget those who have already interacted with your brand by downloading your app, etc. 

Engagement: 

If you need to drive more engagement to your posts or offer your customers more information, this is a great campaign objective. Facebook will show your ad to people most likely to like, share and comment. 

App Install:

This objective is used when you want to get people that will install your app. Here, you can create valuable content displaying the features of your app using video posts or product catalogue. 

Video views

The goal here is to get people to view your video. If you wish to provide your users with information or an instructional guide about your brand, you can optimise for video views to get Facebook to show your ad to people most likely to watch them. 

Now, if you are running a conversion ad and using videos in your ad creative, it makes sense to select the conversion objective rather than video views. 

Lead generation

The main goal of running a lead generation ad is to simply generate leads. This is where you create an opt-in form to have your audience sign up for either a webinar or an email newsletter. The lead generation objective is useful in nurturing prospects using email marketing or any other method. 

Messages

Want to take people from your ad directly to your messenger inbox or WhatsApp? The messenger objective can do that for you. 

Conversions

This is the third stage of the funnel and it’s where you drive conversions to your business. It could be to drive sales, sign up for an email newsletter, buy a course, etc. The conversion objective is used to drive people to your website to complete your call to action (CTA). It works with the pixel installed on your website to allow you to track events and also for optimization purposes. 

Choosing the right campaign objective is key to generating massive returns on all your ads so you want to be strategic when selecting one. 

I will advise that you test different objectives at different stages of your customer’s journey until you find one that best resonates with your business goals. 

#2 Targeting the wrong audience

When you aren’t seeing results from your advertising efforts, you are probably making the common mistake of targeting the wrong audience in your Facebook ads. It is easy to know this if you have a great product, a user-friendly website with great traffic and an amazing offer but little to no sales. In this case, you are reaching people, you are just not reaching the right people. 

One of the mistakes made by some marketers when targeting their audience is trying to appeal to everyone. Not everyone is your target audience and most people won’t buy your product even if they visit your website. Targeting the right people does not only help drive more sales but also reduces the cost spent in acquiring them. So how do you fix this mistake and ensure you are driving the right prospects to your website?

Discover your ideal audience

You have to consider who your target audience is.

What are their interests? What do they look like? Are they young or old? What gender? What is their relationship status? Where do they live? What is their shopping pattern? How much income do they make? 

These are the questions that help you tailor your business and offer to suit your audience.

To discover who your ideal audience is, you should:

  • Do market research: Before setting out to sell or run any ads, you must first conduct market research to discover what is happening in the market. This involves asking the right market research questions that help you discover insights about your audience and how best to appeal to them. You can also use community platforms like Google, Facebook groups, etc to locate people interested in your product. The goal is to find the common factors among these people- interest, gender, age, work profile, income level, etc- and then begin to target these. 
  • Create a buyer persona: A buyer persona is a fictional representation of your ideal customer. Once you have done market research, a buyer persona can then be created to represent what your ideal customer looks like. 
  • Analyse data from Facebook ads: If you have been running ads in the past and have your pixel set up, you can also find data about your customer from Facebook. With these insights, you can discover those that have been buying from you and how you can reach similar audiences. 

Also, you can use  Facebook’s Audience Insights to find out more about your target audience.

The information here can help you discover people that have related to a brand similar to yours. 

When you have an understanding of who your ideal audience is, it guides you in your targeting journey by ensuring you are providing the right content to the right people. 

#3 Not having a retargeting strategy

To the digital marketer, retargeting is one of the most effective means of closing sales with prospects. With retargeting ads, you can engage with people who have related to your brand but are yet to make a purchase. 

So for example, a user comes to your landing page, viewed your offer but did not make a purchase. How can you retarget them? Well, since you already know they are interested in your product, you can then give them an offer they cannot say no to. This can be a discount, free shipping, or simply prompting them to complete their purchase. Here is an example of some retargeting ads I am currently running.

Note: You need to have your pixel installed before you can start retargeting your audience. Your pixel is what helps you track people that have been to your page and what actions they took. 

To retarget users, all you have to do is create a custom audience of the bucket of people you want to retarget. E.G. You can create custom audiences of people who have interacted with your Facebook page, Instagram page, website, specific pages on your website, etc, and then run ads to them.

#4 Choosing the wrong ad 

When you are running ads, Facebook will automatically select the automatic placement for you. While it can be tempting to just go along with this, it is best to use the manual placement that allows you to exclude and include places you want your ads to appear. 

The reason being that there are different goals for different ads and so, placing a particular ad in one location might not be as productive as another type of ad in the same location. For example, for conversion ads, it has been discovered that these types of ads produce more returns in the news feed placement than in any other location. 

Another issue with placement is the problem of formatting. Your ad images and videos are of different specifications and show differently in their different locations. It then makes sense that you must consider a specific format (specification) for each placement and adjust accordingly. 

#5 Failing to track and analyse ads

 Motivational speakers will tell you that the greatest way to learn is from your past mistakes and experiences. Well, Facebook ads are pretty much the same way. A major mistake made by some marketers is that they do not track and analyse their ads. How do you then know what is working and what needs to change if you aren’t tracking or analysing events?

You must track every ad you run to your website, especially if your focus is on optimising for conversions. You want to make sure you are analysing key metrics like your Return on Ad Spend (ROAS), relevance, frequency, Click Through Rate, and Cost Per Result. 

For instance, analysis of your frequency is what will help you know if your audience is seeing your ads too often. When you analyse your ROAS, you can tell if the ads are worth it or if it is time to turn them off. 

The results from this analysis are what will guide you in making necessary adjustments to different elements of your campaign such as your ad creative, budget, campaign objective, offer and targeting. 

#6 Issues with your ad creative and copywriting

Your Facebook ad creative and copy is what contains your offer and all details about your product. Now, because Facebook users are inundated with much information when scrolling through their feed, you will be making a mistake in your campaign if you fail to use attention-grabbing ad creatives and copies that motivate your prospects into taking action. 

The Ad Creative

With Facebook ads, you can select several types of ad creatives depending on your campaign objective. 

One of my favourite features about Facebook ads is the fact that I can test different images and videos till I find one that works best for the ad I’m running. You should also adopt this practice. Create multiple high-quality images and videos that best showcase the features of your offer and keep testing till you find your winning ad. 

Here are some tips for optimizing your ad creative: 

  • Invest in attention-grabbing videos: Some marketers will rather use images as they are easier to create. However, you want to take your marketing a notch higher by investing in quality video ads. Videos are more engaging and drive more actions. Your audience wants to see your offer quickly and so, videos are a great way to offer them shareable, entertaining and instructional content. 
  • Use images that are sharp, colourful and clear to understand: While it can be easy to want to use stock images and move on, a great way to make your ads stand out is by investing in unique image ads that best resonate with your brand. Also, you should consider image size and placement when setting up your ad creatives. 

Ad Copy

There is a reason why copywriters are paid thousands of dollars to craft copies for ads, landing pages, websites, etc. Your copy can be the difference between a winning ad and one that tanks. Your ad copy is where you place tests for your ad and must capture your audience’s attention and convince them to take the desired action.

Tips for creating ad copies for your Facebook Ads

  • Use attention-grabbing headlines:  Your headlines should stop your audience in their tracks and make them want to read the rest of your offer. 
  • Write for one person: Once you know who your ideal audience is and have a buyer persona, you should write a copy that speaks directly to that one person. Your aim is to be able to relate deeply with them and invoke emotions that drive actions. 
  • Ensure your Facebook ad copy is congruent with your image or video: Your ad copy must complement what you have in your ad creative. You don’t want to craft a copy that speaks something different to the rest of your ad. 
  • Use clear and concise language that is easy to understand: The goal is to pass a message in an easy to digest manner. Your audience should not read your copy and be confused about what it is you want them to do. Use simple terms that are easy to understand and convey the benefits of your product and what actions you are trying to convert for. 
  • Test your ad copy: What works with one audience may not interest another. You want to test different ad copies to see which generate the most attention for what audience. 

#7 Poor ad bidding

If you want to start creating ads that generate positive returns, you want to invest in the right bids. Your ad bidding will determine how many people will see your ads, how often they see them and how much you pay for each delivery. One of the mistakes made with Facebook ads is poor ad bidding – paying too much for your ad results or bidding too low and never getting your ads delivered. 

The first thing you need to understand about ad bidding is that when you run ads, you are competing with thousands of other advertisers to get the most placements for your ads. Because Facebook is also a business, they will try to provide the best placements for the highest bidders. However, having the highest bid is no guarantee that your ads will be delivered. 

Here is why: Facebook selects the winning ad from a combination of different factors. The strategy here is to select an ad that has the right budget, offers users a positive experience and provides value. 

Now, there are different bidding strategies you can use in combination with your campaign objective:

  • Impression: If you are using the brand awareness objective, this can be a great bidding option. Facebook will show your ad to as many people as your budget allows. 
  • Link clicks: Here, the focus is on optimising your ads to drive as many clicks as possible. If you are using a lead generation or conversion objective, this can be a great bidding strategy. 
  • Conversions: Facebook will optimise your budget to reach people that are most likely to drive conversions.
  • Daily unique reach: If you are on a low budget and do not want to show your ads to people so often, this can be a great bidding option. 

Your choice of Facebook ad bidding will greatly impact your ad’s reach. The more ads you run, the better you can test with different budgets till you find your winning strategy. 

And there you have it…

Facebook advertising, when done right, will help you grow your business and drive more sales for your products and services

If you haven’t seen a satisfactory return on investment, you may be making some of these common mistakes in your Facebook ads.

We’ve covered some quick solutions in this post that you can use to fix a Facebook Ad campaign that isn’t performing well.

Now, if you are looking for how to grow your business and generate more leads and sales using Facebook Ads, check out my Facebook Ads Accelerator Course.

Take action based on what you’ve learned to improve the performance of any of your low-return Facebook ad campaigns.

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