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10 Common Facebook Advertising Mistakes (and How to Fix Them)

Hey, we all make Facebook advertising mistakes. And, as the great Homer J. Simpson has demonstrated over the last 30 years, insanity can be defined as doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result.

Don’t be like Homer. Try something different if you want different results.

Crucial Facebook Advertising Mistakes to Avoid

facebook ad mistakes


Mistake 1: Casting Your Advertising Net Too Widely

Facebook has about 1.94 billion users across our planet, which means that it is an outstanding social platform for advertising. Logically, this means there are a lot of Facebook users who have absolutely no interest in your brand. Don’t let this discourage you though because this also means that there are certainly lots that likely are!

So how do you find these people? Check your Facebook Insights and Google Analytics to see who is engaging with you currently. It’s also important to build buyer personas that represent your ideal customers to influence your targeting. You can target your Facebook ads in useful ways: by geography, age, gender, interests and more. If you have not taken the time to refine your targeting it’s important to do so, and then continually check your insights and analytics to see who is most likely to purchase from you and refine as necessary.  This is a common problem in the realm of Facebook advertising mistakes.

Mistake 2. Not Excluding Past Purchasers

facebook advertising mistakes

When starting out with Facebook advertising, people often make the mistake of forgetting to exclude people who have already clicked on the ad and made a purchase from their store.

Leaving past converters included in your audience may be a bad idea for several reasons:

  1. You’re wasting your ad budget on people who have already bought from you
  2. Your ads are no longer relevant to those already converted

Vantage automatically removes people who have made a purchase from your audiences, so you are never wasting money on shoppers unlikely to buy. We also have an awesome Top Customer audience that allows you to retarget past customers with new arrivals and promotions based on your customer frequency. If your customer frequency is 30 days, we will only place your customers in the audience once it has been 30 days.

Mistake 3. You Aren’t Using Diverse Ad Types


Facebook offers a wide variety of ad types for a reason – variety is the spice of life, am I right? Photo, video, carousel, mobile, Instagram, and so much more. We’re of the camp that you should always be testing. So try out a variety of ad types and see what works best for your business. Don’t put all of your eggs in the same ad basket! 

Mistake 4. You Are Not Retargeting 

Retargeting ads can make a world of difference for your ecommerce business. Why? Because you’re showing ads to people who have already expressed an interest in your business. That’s half the battle! As an ecommerce business you should be running a retargeting campaign for each of the following scenarios:

  1. A user visits your site
  2. A user browses your products
  3. A user abandoned a cart

Vantage offers these retargeting audiences and more, built using your ecommerce data to help you reach customers based on where they are in your sales funnel. We automatically build the audiences as the key data becomes available for you to build and launch ad campaigns with. Not retargeting is a cardinal sin in the world of Facebook advertising misktakes.

5. Your Ad Does Not Have a Clear Call to Action (CTA)


Did you know that a clear and concise CTA can raise your click-through rate by a factor of 2.85 times? Sure you have your CTA button carefully chosen but it’s also about the copy calling your customer to act that can make a huge difference. Play around with your copy, use negative words such as, “stop buying overpriced dress shirts.” Ask a question such as, “Need new dress shirts?”. Promote how awesome your shirt is and not the product itself, “Looking for sleek and affordable dress shirts?” Above all, be concise and include actionable language.

Mistake 6. You Have No Idea If Your Facebook Ad is Successful

facebook advertising mistakes

It’s important to keep your finger on the pulse of your Facebook advertising efforts. You need to understand what is driving sales for your business and make sure your Facebook and marketing strategy is being fine tuned with the overwhelmingly obvious copy, images, call to actions, etc. that convert. If you’re unsure how your ads are performing Facebook offers a number of easy ways to check on your returns. First, if you’ve boosted your post, at the end of its promotion you can click in on the post itself to see how it performed. Second, for actual Facebook ads, you can delve into your Ads Manager to check out your stats.

Vantage users can review their campaign results to see the ads that are driving the greatest returns and which ones have been turned off due to lack of performance.

Mistake 7. You Never Ask a Big Question with Your Facebook Ad

hubspot facebook ad

You may not realize this but Facebook users like to answer questions: Human beings, well most of us, will respond positively when an ad asks us to interact with it, instead of offering us passivity. People like feeling that their opinion or their ability to answer a question is valued. That and also having something posted that makes them think. “Tired of spending money on poor quality dress shirts?” 

Tip: This is also a great copywriting tip for your Facebook posts! Work questions into your Facebook posts to prompt conversation from your Facebook followers and potential new customers.

8. You’re Using Stale Images

Are you of the mentality, ‘set it and forget it’? We hope not! One of the biggest culprits in underperforming Facebook campaigns is the same old creative. It’s important to always be testing and by that, we mean trying new images and copy to catch the eye of browsers to successfully turn them into customers. Keep your Facebook ads fresh and you’ll always find new customers. Do you have ads dedicated to holidays, seasons, current trends? If not, think about how these themes fit into your business and what you think your ideal customer would be most likely to get excited about. Using exciting and most importantly relevant images can prevent deadly Facebook advertising mistakes.

9. You Launch Your Facebook Ads at Random Times

Think about the last time you launched a new Facebook ad: Did you do any research that helped you decide when you should schedule your ads to be shown? It’s important to take into consideration the time zone and lifestyle of the audience you’re trying to target. If you’re targeting Mom’s in California you might want to have your ads shown around 9m after the kids have gone to bed in the Pacific time zone. Maybe you’re in England but you want to target people in Hong Kong. It may help to keep your costs low and your return on ad spend high. 

10.  You’re a Self Proclaimed Wordsmith, So You Use Lots of Them in Your Ads  

In the world of Facebook ad copy, less is more. You want to be concise and to the point regarding why your target audience should be interested in your product and why that product is worth purchasing.

Here’s a great example. Now let’s talk about why it’s great.

Their copy is simple, impactful and to the point. It tells me what the product is, how they set themselves apart and encourages me to get started. They’ve also included a high-res photo branded with their logo and even a review by a reputable news outlet.  Bam – it’s that simple. This is a great way to avoid Facebook advertising mistakes!

heal facebook ad

Do you have any other tips for your fellow ecommerce marketers to help them excel (and sell) on Facebook? What are the Facebook advertising misktaes you think are most common?


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