5 Common Mistakes in Facebook Ads (and how to avoid them)

5 Common mistakes in facebook ads

For nearly a decade, Facebook has seen an unprecedented growth in the number of advertisers using its Facebook Ads service to promote their products and services. In the year 2020 alone, Facebook added close to three million new advertisers to its platform, resulting in a volume of over 10 million active advertisers. Not only the advertisers, but Facebook’s user base has also soared, with the social media giant reporting a monthly figure of over 2.7 million active users worldwide on the platform in 2020. 

It’s no surprise that advertisers flock to Facebook’s doors with their ad campaigns every year. But it is also important to note that not all campaigns are as lucky as “that” viral ad you came across last week on Facebook. Over 62% advertisers reported breaking even or even losing money on Facebook Ads in the year 2017. While Facebook has added and tweaked several features to make advertising profitable for its users, the diminishing ROIs cannot always be pinned down to the media company. 

With years of improvements and reiterations, Facebook Ads as a platform has seen many changes. These changes have left a lot of practices and ad hacks redundant and make way for several new ones that advertisers often overlook. Even a small mistake while setting up an important ad campaign for your company can prove fatal to your ROIs, draining you out of time and budget in the process. We have compiled a concise list for you that notes down a few common mistakes in Facebook Ads (and how to avoid them). Keep reading to make sure your Facebook Ads campaign does not fail:

1. Not Assigning A Clear Objective To The Ad Campaign

Any successful marketer will tell you that the first step while setting any ad campaign, let alone on Facebook is to arrive at a clear objective first. Ask yourself questions to figure out whether your new ad campaign is supposed to:

  • Drive traffic to your website 
  • Create awareness about your brand
  • Get more leads 
  • Create a one off uptick in your sales of a specific service or product

Once you have a clear objective for your Facebook Ad campaign, you can start customizing and building it accordingly as an objective will provide you with all the parameters you can tinker with later on.

2. Using The Same Ad Creative For Too Long

Social media, as an ever-changing medium often goes through drastic changes that happen quicker than the blink of an eye. With people losing their attention span due to the constant information overload, letting your ad go stale by using it for a long period of time works against your goals. Using the same ad creative for an extended period of time not only loses its relevance, but it also adds to your potential customer’s Ad Fatigue. Think of how long you will take before you get sick of seeing a single ad creative everytime you go through your Facebook Feed. 

Keeping your Ads interesting and aligned with the trends “in-vogue” is also important. An ad creative of your brand’s mascot Dabbing in the year 2021 may not come across as cool as you think it would. The best way to avoid being left behind on the next big trend of social media is to simply consume as much social media as you can. Draw inspiration from the far and wide corners of the internet and tell stories that are relevant, and add to your potential customers’ lives.

3. Targeting The Wrong Audience

With an audience pool of over 2.7 billion people to choose from, it is a lot easier to target the wrong audience than the one that may have your potential customers. With a targeting mismatch, your ad budget and effort will go to waste as it will reach the people that have little to no use of the products or services that you may be offering. Add to it millions of advertisers that may be looking to target the same audience as you and stand to capitalise on the potential customers you may miss due to your poor targeting choices.

Fortunately, Facebook Ads has evolved enough to help you with your targeting preferences. You just need to keep the below factors in mind while setting up your targeted ad campaign:

  • Location: Targeting people based on their location. Always a useful tool for any hyperlocal ad campaign. 
  • Demographics: Targeting people based on their sex, age, income level etc.
  • Interests: Targeting people with interests and hobbies that may overlap with your products or services
  • Engagement: Targeting people that engage with content that is shared by your social handles or ad campaigns.
  • Behaviours: Targeting people based on their web-activity using Facebook Pixel. People that may have visited your website will see your ads on Facebook if targeted.

Automatic Optimization: Facebook also lets you put the optimization of your campaign on auto-pilot! All you have to do is select the parameters you want to choose to target your audience with and let Facebook Ads work for you.

4. Using Ads To Only Sell Your Products Or Services

With the evolving social media landscape, the ads, and their functionality has also evolved. A mistake that most marketers make is using their Facebook Ads to only drive up the sales of their products or services. While the uptick in their sales may provide the marketer with their next big promotion, this process may not reap results for long. To sustain success and relevance on social media, brands and marketers now use Facebook ads as a means to tell a story, interact and engage with their potential customers. We have already highlighted the importance of creating a community on your social media handles, using Facebook Ads to do it only makes your job easier.

5. Forgetting the 80/20 Rule

Look, we get it, as entrepreneurs and marketers, you may think that your product is the best thing to ever happen to mankind. It may even be a product that is going to revolutionise how we go on about our lives, but the bad news is that not many of your potential customers are interested in hearing about your product. Well, at least not directly. 

Keeping the 80/20 rule in mind helps create a positive image of your brand. Use only 20% of your social media, or even Facebook Ads to talk about you or your products and services. Use the remaining 80% to “give back to the community”. Take the example of Lowe’s, a home improvement retail giant from the USA that created the #FixInSix” campaign on Vine that taught millennials quick DIY tricks to fix things in their homes. The campaign, that has now outlasted the platform it started on (Twitter discontinued Vine in 2017) by almost half a decade is seen as one of the biggest success stories of ad campaigns in the digital age and are a good learning to live by.  


Going through the above list may make you feel like there is so much that can go wrong while setting up a Facebook Ads campaign that it is better to not try it at all. Fortunately for the marketer in you, keeping the above list in mind clubbed with the ever evolving services provided by Facebook Ads will only make your job easier. It may look daunting, but once you start with your first ad campaign, the process only goes smoother. 

Facebook Ads is one of, if not the best way to advertise in the age of social media. Everyone and their grandfathers are now advertising on Facebook, what is taking you so long?

You May Also Like