3 Reasons Why Your Facebook Advertising Isn’t Working

by Sandra Rand 4 years ago

While Facebook advertising as an acquisition channel to gain new customers is nothing new, the actual concept of success through this kind of channel can mean many different things to different people. Consider the fact that more than 2 million companies have paid to use the platform to effectively reach new customers; we’re willing to bet most failed to see their programs through to their full potential.

Advertising on social networks is a moving target when it comes to best practices and optimum execution. It’s just not enough to put a plan in place, slap a concept or two together based on what you think your ideal prospect would go for, and then keep your fingers crossed that the floodgates will open with new traffic or leads.

Without understanding all the nuances of running high performing campaigns on Facebook, you might quickly dismiss small wins or misinterpret the results and quickly pull the plug, dragging your ROI down the tubes.

Once your campaigns have been running for awhile, you may find they aren’t driving the masses of customers you were anticipating. Are you finding that your Facebook ad campaigns aren’t delivering the results you were expecting? Here are a few reasons why this might be:

1. Testing and Targeting Could Use Fine Tuning

It’s a constant battle. When it comes to Facebook advertising, it’s nowhere near a set-it-and-forget system. Brands need to constantly test new creative iterations and refine target audiences to identify exactly what sort of messaging & audience combinations seem to be a winning fit. Only a smart approach to testing would help you draw parallels between your live ads and an increase (or decrease) in key KPIs. Only then can you take the winning combinations and constantly iterate to see if you can squeeze even more success out of them.

Keeping Facebook volumes and conversion rates up while keeping a lid on the cost is only achieved with constant testing and optimization. Without this, you might consider your Facebook ad campaigns a failure shortly after getting them live. However, it’s important to give your campaign a fighting chance to perform before giving them the boot.

2. Ad Creative & Copy Isn’t Refreshed Often Enough

Advertising on social media sites like Facebook differ in many ways from other types of online marketing, including the speed of content refreshment that’s required to keep things interesting and keep your messaging being seen by audiences. While other types of advertising might not necessarily require content to rotate that quickly in order to get and retain users’ attention, content on Facebook ads needs to be refreshed on a much more frequent basis.

Ideally, ads should be refreshed at a minimum of 2-3 times per week (automation software can help you mix/match copy & creative to get a number of different combinations going at the right interval). The average Facebook ad has a peak click-through-rate within the first 3 days after going live. As click-throughs decline, you wind up paying a higher CPC.

Users who spend a lot of time on Facebook can potentially see your ad more than once, though Facebook aims to keep that frequency close to one time max for a better user experience in the news feed (that number does not pertain to the right hand rail). If they didn’t click the first couple of times after seeing your ad, they’re less likely to click on subsequent viewings; playing with your messaging and imagery will help you get in front of them again.

3. Not Including a Compelling Call-to-Action

You’re running ads for a reason – to boost your business, attract new customers or leads, or drive sales. Powerful imagery and interesting text get you half of the way there, but then what? You need to tell your audience what to do next. Your ad should generate a sense of necessity to click on the ad right away. Urgency. Timeliness. Scarcity – all the things that get people to take an action on your advertising now versus later.

An airline might run an iteration calling out their current flight prices as a limited time offer, which then leads to a landing page with a compelling case to book online that very same day. You need to test the same combinations of ad versions with different CTAs as well. Play with adding this CTA to the image, where a user is first to look, instead of relying only on the copy. Or, see which conversion button (for example, install vs. download) makes the most sense for the type of action you’re looking for people to take.

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The Bottom Line

Facebook can be a killer platform for paid advertising, but it can also be a massive challenge to make it work. Any brand that wants Facebook ads to work for them needs to have the stamina and resources to constantly finesse their campaigns, which can be a taxing and time-consuming job when done at scale if you’re not staffed up properly or using ad automation software to its fullest potential.

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