Facebook Ads: What NOT To Do | SizzleForce Marketing Blog

Facebook Ads: What NOT To Do

In my on-going effort to become a Facebook Ads Ninja, I am one of those people that may very well spend more time looking at the ads in my feed than I do looking at anything else. I read the copy over and over again. I analyze the offers. I study the targeting. I ponder the image choices. I completely geek out when it comes to this stuff.

I’m convinced, I just saw the absolute WORST ad of all time, that led to the most atrocious digital experience of all time–courtesy of the United States Postal Service.

And here’s the really bad news: YOU may be paying for it. Well, at least part of it. While the USPS claims it receives NO tax dollars for operating expenses and relies on the sale of postage, products and services to fund its operations, according to this well-respected report, American taxpayers give an $18 billion gift to the post office every year. This may be a case of careful word choices. I’m not a lawyer, but perhaps “taxpayer gifts” are different from “tax dollars for operating expenses.” I wouldn’t be surprised. Regardless of how the money is acquired or how it’s distributed, well, I can’t speak to that. I just know it’s depressing to think some of my hard-earned money may be funding this digital marketing nightmare.

Why are my feathers so ruffled over this? Let’s take a look. First, here’s the ad:

The first problem with this ad is the pure irony of it all. They’re investing in a digital ad to promote their “surprising study” that suggests those trying to reach Millennials ought to cut through digital clutter and make connections. Anyone see a disconnect here? If direct mail is so effective, WHY are they investing so much money sharing the idea on Facebook? Send me something via snail mail about it. No, wait. Please don’t.

Secondly, they’ve hit a sore spot with the generation responsible for $200 billion in annual sales by calling attention to the dreaded Millennial stereotypes and suggesting they know better. Take note: Millennials are not in love with the stereotypes that have been assigned to them (who would be?). And one thing is for certain, they have zero interest in an unscientific “study” that suggests something other than what they know to be true. Just take a peek at the first of almost 400 comments attained thus far. Now notice how many people liked this one comment.

The next big problem shows up after you click the “learn more” button in this ad. The form that requires you to complete 16 fields of information before you can even read their “surprising study.” <Insert soundbite from Psycho of woman screaming>

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