Congratulations. You’re an action taker decided to take the plunge and run Facebook and Instagram ads for your business. You’re ready to take your business to the next level baby!

You put some money behind an ad here and there and wait for something to happen. Come on, we’ve all seen these gurus bleat in front of their Lambos or destination holiday how easy it all is, right?

So where the fudge is all the sales?

If this has happened to you, you’re not alone! This is a common scenario faced by a lot of online product store owners leading them to think that ads simply do not work and Ads Manager is like a hungry hippo looking to gobble up all your money instead of marbles.

I hear you. I get it, truly. But that assumption is wrong!

Facebook ads do work.

Think about it, Facebook is a public business which relies on ads to generate revenue. If ads did not work, businesses would not be spending money. And in order for Facebook to keep getting money, they want you to succeed with advertising on the platform because you will spend more money.

What’s not helping is the hype marketers telling you that you will without a doubt make it rain millions overnight with a few simple hacks.

Good for them, and all the ships that sail with them, but for the majority of businesses, this simply will not cut the mustard. It’s the wrong mentality and should be approached with the attitude of growing beautiful flowers in a garden. It just needs good soil, nurturing and time.

Here are some of the common themes that trip a lot of people up when running ads

1) No clear goal – In order for your ad to run effectively from the start, you need to set an objective which aligns with your goal. With Facebook, there are 3 types of objective; Awareness, Consideration and Conversion. If you want to get your name out there and build interest in your brand you may choose awareness. If your goal is all about sales, then conversion is your best bet.

2) Target market/ Not understanding your customer – This is a big one! In order for your ad to be successful, it needs to be in front of the right audience. You need to research your target demographic as much as possible in order to select the best targeting.

Audience Insights helps you to build a detailed picture of your audience using real data from Facebook. Your audience profile will be split into 3 categories.

:: The Demographics – age, gender, language, marital status, education.

:: The Interests – What people SAY they are into. This could be based on page likes and changes all the time.

:: The Behaviours – Online behaviour which points to a certain interest. For example, I might shop online in certain stores or use specific brands. Facebook holds a massive amount of data points on any one person and knows a lot! Take time with this part and you are guaranteed to show your ads to the right people.

3) Boosting posts – Boosting posts are a quick and easy way to promote a post and get as many eyes on it as possible. While it’s got a lot better over the years and sometimes can work in your favour to boost posts that already have traction and are doing well organically. It’s not, however, good for being used to promote directly to your specific audience. The targeting will be broader and probably be wasting a lot of your ad budget with little to no return. We want to get more bang for our buck!

4) Selling to cold audiences – On t’internet trying to sell directly to a cold audience on social media is never a good idea. What you would be doing is asking for a complete stranger to give you money when all they wanted to do was check up on the videos of Auntie Mary’s gin infused weekend. Nobody likes to be sold to, but they love to buy!

Take a step back and warm the audience up by creating content which introduces your brand and gets them curious enough to go to your online store. Track and retarget them by showing them more enticing content or offers before asking for the sale. By that time, they may have seen you a few times and more likely to buy from you.

5) Poor ad creative – Impressions count. Just like if you were on a first date, you want to look your best so your love interest is wowed and impressed. Facebook ads work the same, and the most successful ecom ads are visually pleasing. If you are showcasing a product, you want to make sure you have the best images and videos you can. You want to make sure they are clear, high-quality, non-blurry and taken in a good light

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