Facebook advertising spend is projected to reach $25.56 billion by the end of 2019, a 107% increase from 2016. More advertising spend means more competition for consumer attention. To cut through the noise, marketers need to ensure they’re fully optimizing their Facebook ads strategy.

Are you making any of the 7 common Facebook advertising mistakes below? If so, your results could be suffering.

1. Choosing the Wrong Type of Ad for Your Objectives

The first step in any campaign is, of course, to set your objectives. What is the goal of your Facebook advertising campaign? To drive clicks to your website? Website conversions? Page likes? App installs?

Once you’ve determined your goal, you should select the Facebook ad type that is most suited to meet it. Below is a helpful chart from iCrossing that can get you started.

types of facebook ads

2. Failing to Use First-Party Data for Audience Targeting

First-party data is a valuable source of data for your brand—it contains rich insights about your already-existing customers that you can use for better reengagement. It also gives you a competitive advantage since you maintain exclusive access to it. Since Facebook announced it would phase out its third-party targeting data, it’s more important than ever for marketers to tap into their first-party data for ad targeting.

One of the most valuable sources of first-party data comes from the phone conversations when a consumer calls your business. You can collect it at scale with conversation intelligence solutions like DialogTech, which uses AI to transform conversations into actionable data. You can then integrate that data into Facebook Ads Manager to target users with ads tailored to their previous phone interactions with your brand. This will ensure your ads are reaching interested and qualified customers who are likely to convert.

Example of conversation insights from a senior living phone conversation

3. Picking Dull Images

According to digital marketing experts, the average American sees an estimated 4,000-10,000 ads per day. In order to get their attention in this hyper-saturated environment, you need to provide eye-catching images—studies have shown they account for 75-90% of Facebook ad performance.

What makes a great image? High-converting images are bold, colorful, and unique. Cookie-cutter imagery, obvious stock photos, and drab colors will go unnoticed on the average user’s crowded news feed. You should also refresh your image selection often to avoid fatigue.

See some examples of great Facebook ad images below:

4. Stuffing Too Much Text into Your Ads

If you’re going to overlay text on your image, you should be aware that Facebook prefers ad images with small, unobtrusive text overlays, since they provide a less cluttered experience. When uploading a Facebook ad image that has text on it, be sure to run it through Facebook’s Text Overlay Tool. This will classify your image in one of four categories: “ok”, “low”, “medium”, or “high.” Images that rank “ok” or “low” on the scale tend to perform better than those ranked “medium” or “high.” In fact, if a “high” amount of your image is covered in text, Facebook will penalize you by serving your ad to fewer audience members.

You should also be wary of including too much text in your headlines. In today’s cluttered advertising ecosystem, consumers won’t bother to read long blocks of text. A recent study by AdEspresso found that the highest-performing Facebook ad headlines hover around five words.

facebook ad headline length

5. Failing to Connect Online and Call Conversions

Facebook Ads Manager measures the online results of your campaigns—such as clicks, reach, impressions, and website conversions—however, it doesn’t capture offline results when consumers call. This means if someone calls from one of your landing pages and books an appointment or makes a purchase over the phone, you’ll be unable to tie this conversion to the Facebook ad that drove it.

Conversation intelligence solutions like DialogTech solve this problem by tying each inbound call to the Facebook ad that drove it. In addition, with AI, marketers can determine how many calls driven by their Facebook ads resulted in conversions. They can then push this data into Facebook Ads Manager with the rest of their reporting.

Facebook Ads Manager and DialogTech integration

Push call intelligence data to Facebook Ads Manager to view how many call conversions your ads are driving

6. Making Bids Based on Incomplete Data Sets

To maximize ROI, marketers need to ensure they’re tracking the call conversions driven by their ads and using this data to inform their bidding strategy. Without call conversions, you may be looking at an incomplete view of your ROI and making the wrong optimizations.

For instance, consider the online results of the below Facebook campaigns:

Campaign A drove 55 leads (online)

Campaign B drove 40 leads (online)

Based on this data, you would allocate more budget to Campaign A, which appears to be the top performer.

However, when you include phone call conversions, your results paint a different picture:

Campaign A drove 55 leads (online) + 5 leads (phone calls) = 60 total leads

Campaign B drove 40 leads (online) + 35 leads (phone calls) = 75 total leads

Before integrating conversation intelligence data, you would have been allocating budget to the lower-performing Campaign A, instead of to Campaign B—the true top-performer.

7. Not Continually A/B Testing Your Ads

Creating high-converting Facebook ads is an ongoing process that requires constant testing and refinement. To ensure your tests are accurate, you should change one attribute at a time, keeping all other aspects of the ad the same. For instance, when testing different images, keep the text, bids, targeting, all other variables the same. This will ensure you’re getting accurate results.

For marketers running conversion campaigns, your testing process shouldn’t stop on Facebook. Getting consumers to click on your Facebook ad is only half the battle—you also have to ensure they convert on your landing page. By A/B testing elements of your landing page—images, copy, the number of form fields, button placement, local vs toll-free phone numbers, and more—you can optimize the post-click experience to drive more conversions. Throughout testing, don’t forget to track call conversions, in addition to online conversions.

To learn more audience targeting best practices, download our ebook, Fuel People-Based Marketing Success with Call Analytics.