A classic mistake with Facebook ads


Last week I made a classic mistake with a very successful Facebook ad campaign. I changed it. It was only a minor change but it was enough to break it so it effectively started from scratch. I’ve done this a few times now so you’d think I’d have learnt my lesson, but clearly not… So in the interests of learning from this and other very useful tips regarding Facebook ads, here’s my 11 Top Tips for Facebook Ads for a snowy Sunday morning

1) Facebook ads take a while to settle in. When you create a new campaign, Facebook needs time to figure out the best people to show it to so the ad gets the best results. It needs data to do this. If you have a small daily budget this will take longer than a larger budget, so conversions initially are low. Don’t be too quick to switch your ads off because they’re not working.

2) On that same vein, be wary of making changes to ads that are working well – performance will drop again. It’s really annoying but you almost are starting again, even with the most minor of changes. Better to create a new ad with the change you want and leave the existing one running until the new one has caught up.

3) Consider using multiple campaign types – conversions, clicks (Traffic), and video views. Each one targets a different kind of person, so this is the best way of getting full coverage. If you opt for clicks only, Facebook will only target people most likely to click on your ad, not everyone.

4) Always create multiple variations of ads to run simultaneously. This way you can test images, wording and layout with the same group of people. Once you have a clear winner, create two more ads based on the winner and repeat.

5) Use custom conversions to track activity on your website, for example a contact thank you page. In your Facebook reports you’ll be able to see how many people converted by filling in your contact form as a direct or indirect result of your ads.

6) Remember your remarketing campaigns. Target ads at people who have visited your site, or viewed 50% of more of your videos on Facebook. Remarketing campaigns are often where the real action happens on Facebook.

7) Use your most popular page posts as the basis for your ads. When you create a new ad you can choose to use an existing post so you keep the social proof (all the likes, comments and shares the post already has). You also already know the post works, so the ad has a greater chance of success.

8) Use Google Analytics utm tracking to monitor your ads outside of Facebook. This is just some code you add onto your website address when you create the ad. They track results differently so you’ll have more insight. Use this utm generator to make it easier: https://ga-dev-tools.appspot.com/campaign-url-builder/

9) Select your audience carefully. Don’t do blanket coverage to reach everyone. If you already have clients, consider their demographics – their age, gender, or other characteristics you can narrow down.

10) Understand that Facebook is a social platform, people are primarily there to read posts from friends and family, not to buy stuff. So your ads should slot into that narrative, not jar with it.

11) Facebook works best when it is part of a cumulative marketing effort. Just dipping into it rarely produces big results. You need to go all in and constantly work on it. Combine it with other marketing so you start to be present whereever your potential clients are. Don’t make the mistake of doing one thing at a time, then stopping it because “it’s not working”. You need to create momentum, and that takes multiple touch points and time.