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6 Reasons Your Facebook Ads Aren't Performing

You know Facebook Ads work and that they’re helping tons of other Ecommerce businesses generate a massive amount of traffic and an incredible amount of sales through the power of Facebook Advertising. There’s just one problem. You’re not getting the same results and you’re wondering why that is. You’re running ads or you’ve ran ads in the past and they just aren’t or didn’t pan out but you know the power to scale is there. In this article, we’re going to help you identify what’s making your Facebook Ads and campaigns suffer a fate anything less than stellar and get your Ecommerce business off to the races with these 6 fundamental errors that are common to all unsuccessful Facebook Marketing Campaigns. Error #1: No Pixel

Time and time again we run up against this fundamental issue to why your Facebook Ad campaign isn’t performing well. That is not utilizing the Facebook Pixel to your advantage. The Facebook Pixel is the quintessential tool for maximizing not only the traffic that your website is already receiving but also the traffic that your ads will be sending your way. If the Pixel wasn’t with you from the inception of your ad and throughout its lifecycle then you didn’t give your campaign the best chance it had for being successful.

The FB Pixel is simply a piece of code that is attached to your website and can be configured to collect different types of data from the users that come to your site. The data that can be tracked is variable but it includes demographics in order to find the common denominators of your audience as well as specific actions those same users are taking or not taking on your website. This opens up extremely powerful targeting and re-targeting strategies on both a macro and micro level.

On the macro level you can target large swathes of potential prospects through lookalike audiences that have similar tastes, interests, values, and demographics in order to grow your current customer base. On the micro level you can even re-target users on Facebook who have already been to your website and show them a specific ad depending on what action they did or did not take while visiting. Using the context of where your prospect is in the buyer’s journey provided by your Pixel allows you the over-powered ability of meeting your potential customers exactly where they’re at with a targeted message. You can even send them an ad of the precise item they were viewing but didn’t buy on your Ecommerce store! Error #2: Boring Creative and Bad Copy

One of the most straight-forward reasons that your Facebook Ad campaign for your Ecommerce business is failing to generate leads or drive the traffic you want to your landing page is the advertisement itself. Nothing kills a marketing campaign faster than ugly creative and boring copy. Ugly creative can mean a lot of different things. Since you’re vying for the attention of your prospect with their friends and family on Facebook’s platform, you need to take the utmost care when choosing your visual assets. These can be images or video but they need to meet a high standard of quality if you want your ads to thrive. These assets should be pleasurable for you and your prospect to consume.

Images should be clear and concise, not grainy or washed out. Video should be steady and edited well. Keep text to a minimum and harsh colors that scream PennySaver kept completely at bay. Your visual elements should be working cohesively with your copy to produce the emotions in your prospect that you are aiming for. If you don’t have any content that you’re producing and that can be re-purposed for Facebook Ads then schedule a shoot day where you hire someone to take high quality photos and video of you, your operation, your product, or your service. This one shoot day can be worth months of content that can be packaged and repackaged in many forms and delivered across your platforms with confidence.

Great care should be taken with the copy as well. If your visual asset has piqued your prospect’s interest, the next thing they will judge is your ad’s headline. An uninteresting headline is a surefire way to guarantee that your ad has a short and unfulfilled life. Remember, Facebook Ads go to personal news feeds so make sure to keep this fact in mind when creating an attention grabbing headline. The worst thing you can do is mimic ad copy from decades past or pay to run an ad that clearly hasn’t an ounce of creative juice in its bones. If you’re bored then so is your prospect. Your ideal buyer isn’t going to spend their precious seconds clicking your ad if you couldn’t be bothered to spend an extra 5 minutes to come up with some enticing copy instead of “This is our product and this is clearly an ad, please check it out!”

Consider what makes you stop and read posts on your own news feeds. What do they have in common? How are they different from the ads you’ve been running? Ads that succeed at grabbing your attention likely have more in common with strong social media posts than they do classically strong advertisements.

Give your ad a chance by dedicating serious effort in creating copy that hooks your prospect, makes them pleasantly surprised when they stick around long enough to consume the rest of your piece, and in the end drives them to action. You have a tiny window of time and only a few short sentences to make the difference between someone who clicks or someone who doesn’t. Respect that window and put in the time to craft copy that sells.

Context is king. When considering the guts of your content, you must make it contextual to your buyer. You should have a very strong understanding of not only who your prospect is but also what they think, what they worry about, what keeps them up at night, and what problem you’re helping them solve. Always keep your ideal buyer in mind and speak to their innermost needs and desires in a fun and creative way. Gain their trust by nailing that connection to their subconscious while expertly disguising your ad as an interesting, benign social media post from a trusted source and you’ll be on your way to a winning Facebook Ad campaign.

Following these guidelines will increase your content’s relevancy score. Facebook uses a metric it calls relevancy to determine the quality of your ads. If Facebook’s algorithm decides that your ad is not relevant due to the fact that users are not engaging with it in positive ways then your ad will be dead in the water. Do not let this happen. Make quality content and be rewarded. Error #3: No Split Testing

Split Testing (or A/B Testing) is a strategy where you take one piece of content, slightly change one element, and then show these two separate versions to similar audiences for a long enough amount of time to make an educated decision on which version is performing better.

Very often we see that many Ecommerce businesses will just run an ad and hope for the best, totally disregarding this powerful technique for optimizing your ad campaigns cheaply and effectively. The thing fundamental trick to a simple and successful Split Test is to choose one and only one variable to test for. If you choose more than one you can’t be sure which change actually caused the difference in the data that you’re seeing. Make sure to choose a metric you want to test for as well. The are several different types of variables to choose from but the two most broad and common categories are that of design and user experience.

Design is the most relevant aspect to test for your Facebook ad. If you want to test the design of your ad then choose variables that will alter that the way it looks. Change the color of your Call-to-Action text to test for the click-through rate of your ad. Change the font. Change the visual asset. Choose any one variable and run the two ads (the unchanged one and the altered one) simultaneously and gauge which one performs better based on the metric you chose to test for. Once you know which one performs best then cut the ad spend funding for the poor performer and scale up the ad spend being spent on your star performer. Error #4: Audience Targeting Flaws Another mistake we see is the improper use of the tools in the Facebook Ad Manager to accurately, consistently, and effectively target the audience that will buy your product or service. Now we’ve already discussed earlier the power of creating custom audiences based on data collected on your website using the Facebook Pixel, but what many don’t realize is that you can create custom audiences based on relationships that you already have with your current customer base that cannot be mapped by the Pixel. This is made especially effective if you already have an email list to pull from.

What you do is you import this email list into your Facebook Ads Manager and Facebook’s algorithm will then find all the common denominators present among these individuals and then target users on their platform that fit the bill. This gives you an even greater chance of getting your advertisement in front of someone that it’s intended for. Don’t let this opportunity go to waste. You can also create custom audiences for types of engagement that Facebook users have used to interact with your content in the past. For instance, you can have your ads target people that have viewed a video of yours, filled out a lead gen form, and have liked your Facebook Page, Instagram profile, or a previous post. This is an underutilized way to optimize your campaigns and, at the same time, maximize and remarket to your current social media following on Facebook and Instagram (since Facebook owns Instagram, they inhabit the same advertising ecosystem). Remember to pay close attention and make use of your Facebook Audience Insights to see the demographics of the people engaging with your content. Don’t make blind choices based on hunches that aren’t backed by verifiable data. Facebook gives you all the tools to make your Ad Campaigns a smashing success. You’ll never stop tweaking and iterating but if you take advantage of these tools from the onset you’ll increase your success rate out the gate by a huge margin. Error #5: No Bidding Strategy

When it comes to bidding, Facebook’s Advertising Platform uses an auction format. Even though Facebook will take into consideration many factors (such as relevancy, buying signals, etc.) when deciding when and who they show your ads to, a significant factor that tends to be overlooked is the different ways you can optimize your bidding strategy.

Since it is an auction, the price to play goes up when demand goes up. If there’s more advertisers trying to play in your market then the price to get in front of your ideal buyer will be higher. The easiest, no-brainer way to maximize your bids is to use Facebook’s automatic bidding algorithm. Let the computer automatically find the opportunities that are the lowest cost for the objective you’ve set. This is very helpful if you have a limited budget and simply want to maximize your reach with what you have or if you are gauging your cost per lead. But there is another way that you can effectively outbid your competition while controlling costs based on your ad objectives. That is through the use of Manual Bidding strategies. Manual bidding isn’t always available because it is only an option for certain placements and is only accessible when determining your budget. But the great thing about manual bidding is that you can customize your strategy in a variety of ways.

You can set a cost cap by having Facebook not spend more than you’re willing to per bid. You can set a bid cap where you won’t have Facebook bid more than a pre-selected amount. Since you’re playing in a 2-tier auction, Facebook will only spend from your budget just enough to beat a competitor’s bid. For instance, if another advertiser caps their bids at $5 and you cap yours at $7 then you’ll win the bid spending $5.01 instead of the full $7 (unless, of course, another advertiser outbids that price). If you’re running a time-sensitive ad then you can use Accelerated Delivery to push your ad out in front of your competitors and start getting eyes and traffic as soon as possible. This strategy isn’t as cost effective but it’s built for speed. You can set a target cost that will seek to ensure as many conversions as possible for the cap that you put in place. In this scenario you may miss out on cheaper opportunities where users would have converted for much less but, on the flip side, you’ll have a more consistent campaign. Error #6: Poor Funnel Optimization

Spending your marketing dollars on Facebook ads is an excellent way to scale up your traffic and sales but even if you do everything right your campaign can still get derailed if you don’t get this step right.

If you’re using your ads on Facebook to drive traffic to your website and/or landing page then you need to make sure that you’ve optimized those pages for the users that you’ll be sending there. If you don’t have Google Analytics set up on your pages then I recommend you do so right now. Google Analytics is an incredibly powerful demographics and reporting tool that will help you visual when and where users are abandoning your funnels in order to make changes to elements on those pages that will keep retention and completion numbers high which will maximize the time and energy and money spent on your Facebook Ad Campaign. When analyzing your funnels you can test for certain elements like we explained in our section on Split Testing. If you notice a high bounce rate on one of your pages then consider the effects your headlines, copy, font, and color choices are having on your prospects. Seek to reduce as much friction as possible along the Purchase Path. Even one extra click can be the difference between a sale or sign-up. Respect that difference and put in the extra work to make your funnels as smooth and effortless as they can be. These are the most common denominators that we’ve seen among Facebook Ad Campaigns that are failing to live up to expectations. Remember to always be testing. Rarely do things that are currently working maintain the same momentum as time goes on. You should have a strong testing habit that invites adaptation and optimization into every aspect of your marketing. People change and so do the markets along with them. Meet your prospects where they are at. If you have any further questions or you’re wondering what our opinion is on your unique situation then contact us today.

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