Skip links

The Do’s and Don’ts of Paid Facebook Ads

bullseye

With over 1.6 billion daily active users and about 80 million business pages, Facebook remains the social media king. But what’s more worth noting is that 26% of users who clicked on ads made a purchase, making paid Facebook ads an important part of businesses.

To be clear, we’re not referring to free/organic posts, as organic traffic is almost non-existent on Facebook nowadays. Also, we’re talking about setting up ads from scratch through Business Manager — not just merely boosting them (which offers benefits, too).

Facebook ads benefit brands because they offer a targeted audience, help reach far more people, and enable you to retarget those you’ve already interacted with. This also allows you to find new leads, scale your content promotion, and encourage customer loyalty.

So, whether you’re new to paid Facebook ads or you’re a seasoned advertiser, here are some do’s and don’ts to incorporate in your strategy today.

Paid Facebook Ads: What to Do — And What to Avoid

The Do’s

1. Do Know Your Target

Before you work on your ads, research your target audience, their online habits, and what they like. Facebook allows you to be really specific with your targeting – from demographics and location to hobbies and interests and languages that are spoken. Take advantage of this! You can tweak the parameters a few times to find out who will best respond to your ads.

Remember, when you know and understand your audience, you can develop effective ads that are interesting and relevant to them. And you don’t have to target everyone, but just the people most likely to spend with you.

2. Do Use Quality Graphics

In a space full of posts and advertisements, you only have a few seconds to capture people’s attention. And to do that, you must use eye-catching images and videos that will make them stop and make time for you.

Your graphics should be clean and simple, high-quality, and easy to understand, yet still fun, vibrant, and creative. Sound difficult? It is!

Choose bright contrasting colors or use images of pets and smiling people for the best conversions. However, make sure that these are relevant to what you’re advertising, and find ways to incorporate them into your brand.

Check out this visually-striking and straightforward ad by Nintendo:

nintendo paid facebook ads

For the best results, follow Facebook’s ads guide for the proper specs and formats. Also, avoid images that have more 20% text as these can be rejected by Facebook. If it happens to get through, your ad might not perform well as the text becomes too illegible. Facebook offers a free tool where you can check how much of your image your text takes up.

3. Do Include a Clear Call-to-Action (CTA)

A clear and concise CTA immediately tells the audience what you want them to know about your offering and the purpose of your message. This, in turn, helps them take action and make faster decisions. Hello, conversions!

With only 25 characters for your headline and 90 for the description, create a strong CTA that’s on-point and definitive of the next step you want them to take. Whether it’s a simple “Click below to learn more” or “Buy Now and Save X%,” make sure it’s aligned with your ad copy so as not to mislead or confuse your audience. Consider adding incentives — promo codes, limited-time discounts, or first customer prizes – to entice the audience to click and make a purchase.

Full disclosure: Facebook is incredibly picky with the words you use in your ad. For instance, using the word “you” can get an ad rejected. So, know that you might need to try changing up the wording a few times before your ad gets approved. And that’s okay!

See how Boston Sports Club creates a sense of excitement and urgency with their strong CTA:

boston sports club paid facebook ads

4. Do A/B Testing

A/B testing or split testing allows you to test different ad versions and identify which one works best.

To effectively do this, it’s important that your two ads differ only in one variable and you only change one thing at a time. Otherwise, it will be difficult to determine why one ad outperformed the other.

Similarly, your audience during this phase should be large enough and not used on other running ad campaigns. This is to avoid having your test ads and actual ads compete against each other, thus making it difficult to determine the results.

Remember, A/B testing is the key to understanding what works well and to improve on what doesn’t.

For example, you might split test your ad headlines. Or, you might one run ad with an image, one with a carousel, and one with a video. While you’re testing these individual variables, keep all of the others the same!

4. Do Track Your Ads Regularly and Optimize as Needed

To achieve the best results, you need to monitor your paid Facebook ads’ performance regularly and make changes accordingly. However, it’s advisable to apply changes only when really necessary so as not to jeopardize the campaign results.

Consistently check your Facebook Metrics and Insights page to learn more about your ads and how they deliver to your audience. Consult Business Manager to see what kind of data it’s collecting. Is one ad seriously underperforming? Turn it off. Are women engaging with your ads more than men? Optimize the targeting so that you’re aiming specifically for women!

Paid Facebook ads are not a “set it and forget it” type of scenario. They’re evolving works of art. You will likely have to tweak them over time so that you can see a return. (This is totally normal.)

taking notes

Plus, e-clincher can give you additional data on page performance and audience engagement. You can connect this with your Google Analytics account to monitor other key metrics like traffic sources and understand why and how people are converting.

Doing regular checkups helps ensure that your paid Facebook ads are at their best so that you can get the best possible ROI for your efforts and investments.

The Don’ts

1. Don’t Complicate Things

As we said earlier, you only have a short amount of time to capture users’ attention, so your paid Facebook ads must not confuse or overwhelm them. Rather, these should be short and straight to the point – something viewers can comprehend within a few seconds.

Your ads must have a simple headline, a descriptive message, and a clear image that’s consistent with your brand and offerings. Be sure to include your business name, what you’re proposing, its key selling points, and why it’s useful to the audience.

Also, beware of using deceptive ads as clickbait. You don’t want to anger your users or get banned from the platform because your ad misled them. Customers are the heart of your business, so building trust is of utmost importance.

2. Don’t Spend Too Much Right Off the Bat

Successful ads don’t immediately mean spending thousands of dollars from the word “go.” You may have serious money to drop on ads, but remember what we said earlier: You’re going to have to test ads. And this is especially true in the very beginning.

woman getting credit card out of wallet

You should assume that you’re going to lose at least a little money in the beginning, so don’t gamble too much. Set your budget limit to what you can comfortably afford but something that can still get results. As an example, $5 a day on an ad won’t do much. But $15-$20 a day is enough to start gathering data on ad performance.

It’s okay to start small and slowly increase your spending when you see results! In most cases, you won’t want to increase your budget unless your ads are earning a return on your investment. With A/B testing, play around with the ad elements to see which will bring the best returns.

Substantial investment may be needed, but finding the right balance and staying true to your business objectives is also important.

3. Don’t Forget Your Facebook Pixel

The Facebook Pixel is a piece of code you can place on your website to track visitors’ actions, behaviors, and characteristics. You often experience this when you visit a website and see their ads on Facebook later that day.

This determines your ad’s effectivity by recognizing who arrived on your site from the Facebook ad. It also gives data about the viewers, so you can segment them according to their online habits and serve succeeding ads to a more targeted group.

Don’t worry if you don’t know how to install this. Facebook has outlined simple installation steps to help you incorporate this on your site.

Installing your Facebook Pixel is a must. You should do this before you run any ads.

4. Don’t Stop Posting on Your Page

Your ads and feed posts should always complement each other. Just because you’re running ads doesn’t mean that you get to skimp on organic posts. When people are interested in your ad and want to learn more, they’ll first look into your Facebook page to know if the business is credible and legit.

That’s why it’s important to always implement best practices on your Facebook page. Keep your profile complete and accurate and maintain relevant and up-to-date posts. Be sure to engage with your customers and interact with other brands. Doing these will make users feel more secure about your brand and help turn them into potential customers.

5. Don’t Forget to Proofread

One little typo might affect your brand’s credibility. You wouldn’t want users to comment on your mistake instead of asking about your ads, so it’s crucial to review them before posting.

See how this Target ad was left unchecked prior to publishing:

mistake in target facebook ad

Double-check and even triple-check for possible errors in spelling, grammar, and punctuation marks. It’s also always a good idea to seek another pair of eyes and consult a colleague or your social media manager.  

It’s better to be safe than sorry, so always take a good look at your ads before publishing them.

The Bottom Line

It’s a fact: Facebook ads are important. Vital, even. When implemented properly, they can help you achieve your business goals – whether it’s reaching a targeted audience, improving brand awareness, growing a consumer base, developing customer loyalty, or boosting sales.

However, as in any and all business efforts, don’t expect great results to happen overnight. Rather, mindfully practice these do’s and carefully correct these don’ts, and you’ll gradually see that you’re well on your way to improving your Facebook strategies. When you take the time to learn the platform and become open to making the necessary adjustments, you’ll eventually succeed in your Facebook investments and scale your business.

Most importantly, remember that you don’t have to do all of this by yourself. If you need help with your Facebook campaigns and other social media concerns, e-clincher is here to help. Trusted by businesses and agencies worldwide, we’re a one-stop-shop for all social media management needs. Contact us today to start your free trial.