This post is part of our Ad Academy series. Find help with choosing the creative for your Facebook ads and budgeting your Facebook ads here. You can also reference our post about using Facebook ads to strengthen your content marketing plan here.
Did your recent Facebook ad completely flop? We’ve all been there. It’s part of marketing successfully, and one ad’s failure is hardly a reason to give up.
In fact, even if every ad you’ve ever created has failed miserably, there’s still hope to create an engaging ad. After all, you now know at least one way that doesn’t work, leaving you free to try other options.
That’s because marketing and advertising are built around a core value of testing, testing, and retesting.
If you change your mindset from:
“This one will definitely work. It’s going to go viral! Let’s see how many clicks we get!” to “We’re currently testing this ad to see how our audience reacts to it,” you’ll see your ads’ flops less as failures and more as informative tests.
What to do when your Facebook Ad flops
You might feel unsure of what to try next if your painstakingly-created Facebook ad failed to drive clicks or engagement. Here’s a few ideas of ways to take your Facebook ad failure and turn it into insight.
1. Change one thing only.
Pick one thing that you believe might have affected the results of your Facebook ad–just one thing. That could be the headline, the link you send visitors to, the image for the ad, or the text. Once you’ve pinpointed the element that you believe could be making a negative difference, change it. Measure the results.
If you don’t see the improvement you’re looking for, try changing one more thing. If you change just one element of your ad at a time, you will have a better idea of the change that ends up making a difference and netting you the most results.
2. Try A/B testing two or more ads at once.
Maybe your last ad just wasn’t a good one. Try creating two new ads and testing those at the same time to see which drives the most engagement and clicks. It’s helpful if there are control and test variables–for example, both would feature the same text, headline, and link, but you might choose different images for each ad and see which performed better.
This gives you better insight into your audience. Think about why your audience engages with the content they engage with. What’s different about it and the version that didn’t pan out so well?
3. Try a version of the ad on another network.
The ads we run on Facebook are vastly different from those we run on Twitter. And on the same note, sometimes we post similar content on both networks but notice a post that was wildly popular on Facebook that didn’t get so much as a peep on Twitter. That’s because our audiences on each of those networks are a bit different.
If the ad you created with Facebook in mind didn’t pan out, try running a version of that ad on Twitter. You might be surprised by the results you get, and you’ll manage to get some use out of what might have been a wasted ad.
4. Ask for honest opinions.
There’s no better way to find out why your ad went wrong than asking for honest opinions. Don’t do this online, but rather look to personal friends, colleagues, and coworkers that might take a moment to look the ad over and tell you what they think of it. Maybe there’s too much text or the image looks cheap. Perhaps it’s only appealing to women when you want to target both genders.
Their insight, no matter what it is, can be really valuable as you go in for round 2 and create a better ad. Be clear that you won’t take offense to any suggestions or issues someone may see with your ad.