Custom Audiences for Black Friday Facebook Ads

Custom Audiences for Black Friday Facebook Ads

Custom Audiences for Black Friday Facebook Ads


As it’s mid-November it’s appropriate for my latest blog to talk about custom audiences for Black Friday Facebook ads.

To help you achieve better ad success let’s take a look at which custom audiences you should be creating in your Facebook Ad Manager account. These are the people you want to target with your exciting Black Friday sales and offers.

The great news is that these group of people have already demonstrated that they are interested and like what you do – they are your warm audience. They are more likely to buy from you and be receptive to hear what you have on offer. The audiences you retarget may be a smaller group than others, but hopefully you will get more sales from them meaning that you will maximize your return on investment.

Which custom audiences should you be creating?

What I need you to do is:

  • Go into your Ads Manager
  • Head to your menu
  • Find ‘audiences’ and select this
  • It’s here in ‘audiences’ where you create your custom audience.

Consider creating these custom audiences:

  • website visitors.
  • breakdown website visitors by specific pages (great practice if you are a product-based company!
  • those who have visited your ‘thank you’ pages or specific ‘landing pages’.
  • if you've promoted products previously why not include anyone who has visited these pages over the past 180 days for example.
  • Anyone who has purchased something (if you have a Purchase event tracking on your website).
  • People who have added items to their cart (again this is easier if you have a shop functionality on your website as it will automatically track these people)

Give a great customer experience

As you can see there are lots of options available to you to define the right audiences for the type of offer you have.

Really think about customer service too. Do you want to be targeting your customers repeatedly? I could be that they don’t want to be bombarded with ads if they have already bought, so you want to think here about excluding some people (purchasers) or creating smaller audiences (website visitors in the last 30 days).

Engagement audiences

This type of custom audience includes people who like your Facebook page or your Instagram profile.

They will already be engaging with the content you're putting out there. It’s highly likely that they’ll be interested in what you've got to offer.

It can also include those who are watching your videos. It’s possible to track video view audiences too enabling you to create custom audiences depending on how much time they have watched your videos.

Don’t forget your customer lists

When creating custom audiences for ads it’s important to think about the people who have signed up to your email lists and your bot subscribers. Check that you are GDPR compliant and get them uploaded! Facebook walks you through exactly how to do it, so it’s quite easy.

Shop engagement

You’ll get good results when targeting custom audiences who have interacted with your shop on Facebook or Instagram. They’re clearly interested in your products and will be pleased to hear if they can get a great deal from you on Black Friday.

Custom audiences are great value for you!

As I mentioned earlier, your custom audiences may not be huge, but as they are aware of what you do and have shown an interest, they are more likely to take you up on your Black Friday offer. I think some people can’t actually wait to hear from you around this time of year!

So, as it’s not a huge group, you won’t have to use as much ad spend to get the ads out to them and you’ll make more of a return on investment if they buy. Good news all round!

Lookalike audiences

Another benefit of custom audiences is that you can create lookalike audiences from them.

These are really powerful cold audiences based on the warm audiences mentioned before - for example, those who have purchased from your website.

I recommend that you start with these lookalike audiences rather than reaching out to interest-based cold audiences as they often work well.

My favourites to create using your warm custom audiences as the seed audience are your email list, purchasers, people who have submitted a form to your website (if you’re tracking these for instance as a Complete Registration event). They are more hot than warm!


I touched on this earlier on in the blog. You may not want to target all the people in your audience.

For purchase conversion objectives for example, you might want to exclude people who have bought from you in the last 14 days perhaps. By creating that custom audience initially, you can then use it to take out the people who have taken action and leave behind the ones who haven’t still.

You are effectively maximising the amount of people who you are getting in front of with your offer so that you’re not repeating yourself to the same group of people. There’s a huge audience out there who haven’t yet properly engaged with you.

And you never know, some of these could go on to be your best customers. Try it!

You know your customers better than anyone, so you will know how often someone is likely to leave it before buying from you again – have a look at past statistics to see if there is a buyer pattern.

And if there’s a group of people not following this usual trend a Black Friday ad campaign is a wonderful way to give them a ‘gentle’ nudge to become a customer once again.

What’s retargeting?

If you are not familiar with the term ‘retargeting’, this is when you target people who have already shown an interest in your brand, products and services. These are the people who have engaged with you on social media or checked out your website for example.

Once they have taken a certain action, you create an ad specifically to them – remember those ads from your favourite clothes shops that magically appear in your Facebook feed when you’ve been browsing? Those are retargeting ads. You will be in an audience of people who have viewed their content and into the next section of their ad campaign, reminding you to buy!

Any questions?

If you need help with anything to do with Facebook Ads, including how to set up your custom audiences, you may benefit from having a power hour with me. A full 60 minutes where we concentrate on ironing out any issues that you are experiencing or learning how to set up your ads for success. For just £97, I’ll get you on track! Here’s a link to book yourself onto a power hour where you decide on what you want to cover.

Are your Facebook or Instagram Ads working | Alex Platt Facebook ads management

Are your Facebook or Instagram Ads working?

Are your Facebook or Instagram Ads working?


Do you know how to tell if your Facebook or Instagram ads are working? Sure, your bank balance may well tell the tale of success or failure, but actually there is a little more detective work that you can do.

It’s best practice to keep an eye on your ads and to check on their performance. The ads that you can identify as not working can be rethought or switched off – either way you won’t be wasting your money. But how do you actually know whether they are working?

Metrics in Facebook Ads Manager

Let’s look at what metrics you should be looking for in your Ads Manager to check that an ad has done its job. Yes, I know that the first screen when you open Ads Manager is a bit daunting, but don’t let that put you off, I’m here to talk you through it.

Finding your way around Facebook Ads Metrics

By default, this first screen shows you the performance of your ad. But it doesn’t necessarily give you the information that you want to see.

To find where to change the view of your metrics -

  • Look at the top bar above the numbers. On the right-hand side find the ‘Breakdown’ button,
  • To the left of the ‘Breakdown’ button you’ll see the ‘Columns’ button. Here is where you can change the columns to show you the information that you need to see.

As you’ll want more detail, I recommend that you go down to Performance and Clicks.

A good indication for whether your Facebook or Instagram ads are working is to look at the CTR (Link Click Through Rate – not All though):

  • For a cold audience, that’s the people who have not heard of your brand before, the ideal CTR is 1% and above, or as close to 1% as you can get. This shows you the percentage of people who are clicking on your ad. If you are achieving this figure, you’re doing a great job. Your ad copy and your images are appealing to the audience that you're advertising to. If the percentage is way lower that 1% it’s clear that the ad isn’t doing its job properly. In this scenario, rethink the content and the imagery and test a new version.
  • For warm audiences, those who already know about your brand, the CTR should be higher, around 1.5% to 3%. Again if it’s falling short, you need to rethink your ad creative.

How to set up your personal preset metrics.

The other really useful thing that you can do on the Columns drop down is to head to Customise at the very bottom. From here you can choose the different metrics that you need to track.

My top tip is for you to map out the journey that you want people to take from seeing your ad and add those metrics accordingly.

Facebook Ad --> Landing Page -->Complete Registration

Say your potential customer has seen your ad, and the ads purpose was for them to click on a link which takes them through to a landing page. To know how successful this has been you’ll need to be looking at ‘landing page views’. So add this to your metrics columns to track.

From the landing page, your aim is then for them to complete a form. You may have added an ‘event’ (which is when someone takes an action on your landing page, which you can track through the Events Manager in Facebook) and classed this as ‘Complete Registration’. You can then add that metric to the columns.

If your audience are going to your landing page, but not completing the next part of the journey that indicates a problem with the landing page. For some reason, it’s not influencing a positive action. Have a look at the content and the imagery – identify what potentially is stopping the individual from taking that next step. Are you communicating your solution effectively?

Or if you have an ecommerce shop, your journey could be:

Facebook Ad --> Landing Page --> View Content --> Add to Basket --> Purchase --> Purchase Conversion Value --> Return on Ad Spend

So work your way through and search in Customise Columns to add each step to your list and remove any that aren’t necessary.

Don’t forget to save as your name at the bottom to choose each time you come into Ads Manager.

See my quick Instagram Reel here to show you how to do this quickly.

Other preset metrics that you could choose.

If all this still sounds a little technical, then there are a few preset columns that you can choose to make your life easier.

Video Engagement will track how many people have watched your video and for how long. Ideally you want the majority of people to have watched as close to 100% as possible, but Facebook charges you when you reach 15 seconds which they term a ‘Thruplay’.

Engagement shows you the page post likes, comments and shares (don’t forget that a Boosted post is merely an Engagement ad).

Messenger Engagement is for ads that you push people to start a messenger conversation with you - this preset will track all the relevant metrics in relation to this – link clicks, conversations started etc.

My final takeaway

I really don’t want you to be bamboozled by the metrics but by understanding the basics will definitely make a difference to the success of your ads – how can you continue with an ad (or stop it) if you aren’t sure whether it’s performing or not?! But, as ever, I’m here to offer my exert advice if you need it.

Rule number one is to always know the objective (the purpose) of an ad, this will allow you to understand the customer journey. Knowing what action you want your customer to take as part of your sales funnel will help you to identify the best metrics to look at to help you discover any bottlenecks.

Rule number two. Rethink, change, test and repeat! Or if it simply isn’t going to work, stop the ad and save your money.

Let me see if your Facebook or Instagram ads are working!

How would you like to have my full attention for a full hour and ask me anything? No problem, just book in your power hour for a time to suit you. It may be the best £97 you’ve spent. One hour to get whatever you need – an audit of your ad account to see what has or hasn’t worked and my advice on what to tweak to make a difference, some personal training, answers to questions about ads you intend to run to help iron out any doubt you may have about doing the best thing or simply a quick consultation on ad copy and creative to hit your audience in their feed and get them to click on your ad. It’s your time to do with what you wish! Simply book yours here. I hope to speak to you soon.


Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook


There’s a secret to running a flash sale on Facebook. And you won’t believe what it is when I tell you, after the advice I have given before.

Black Friday and Christmas is a busy time for businesses and marketers as well as those customers on the lookout for a bargain.

In a recent blog, ‘Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads More Expensive I explain that the cost rises around this season due to the sheer increase in adverts on the social media platform. Every business owner wants to get in front of customers when shopping is high on people’s agendas.

But, sssh, here’s what to do if you want to be running a flash sale on Facebook

Let’s say for example that you want to do a sale for four days to cover Black Friday through to Cyber Monday. You don’t have time to test. You don’t have time to build up audiences. So what choices can you make to get a better result?

My advice is to give Facebook the reigns and let the social media platform take charge of your campaign. Yes, really!

Give the control to Facebook

There are choices that you can make when setting up an ad campaign that actually allows Facebook the power to make some of the decisions for you.

As a Facebook Ads manager I don’t always use these options myself because I want to be in complete control of everything, and no, it’s not because I’m a control freak (well maybe a little bit), it’s because I need to see what is and isn't working directly correlating to my choices. Understanding this allows me to optimise and test to get better results.

But for a flash sale it’s different. When you have a short time, it’s time to listen to Facebook and follow their prompts.

Here’s how to hand over your flash sale to Facebook to get you the best results:

1. Set the correct objective.

For sales always set your objective for conversions and set it at purchase level to tell Facebook that that is the outcome that you want for your ad (you will need to have registered purchases through your pixel to be able to choose this option). This gives Facebook the green light to go out there and find the people who are highly likely to make those purchases.

2. Schedule your campaign.

The other option is to choose to schedule the campaign and give it a lifetime budget.

lifetime budget for Facebook ads - Five Secrets to running a Flash Sale on Facebook

By giving the maximum amount of money you're instructing Facebook to spend it. Facebook will spend that money to get you the most results for your campaign. When you choose daily spend, Facebook can spend under the amount on some days, so your reach might be less.

This also stops the messing around with scaling the budget, or watching to clock waiting to turn the campaign off.

3. Expand your reach.

Under detailed targeting is a little tick box saying “Detailed targeting expansion: Reach people beyond your detailed targeting selections when it's likely to improve performance".

Expanded reach for Facebook ads

Normally I don’t choose this, as you don’t know who or what it is targeting to get you the better results and in the past it didn’t help with finding quality leads. However recently Facebook has upgraded it’s automated options and this can really help to find better quality leads.

Or try a broader, much larger, audience than you usually would target – all Women in the UK for instance, without any detailed targeting options.

I have discovered from experience that I can sometimes get a much better cost-per-result when I exercise this third option.

4. Automatic Placements.

The other thing you can try is automatic placements for your ad placement.

Automatic placements for Facebook ads

In this choice, Facebook decides where to put the ads depending on where it gets the best results. You might find that you get results from Marketplace or the Audience Network, somewhere you might not have tried before.

5. Dynamic Creative for your ads.

Switching on the Dynamic Creative option in the ad set level is another way to give Facebook control.

Dynamic Creative for Facebook ads

Here, you provide up to 10 images and videos – you can mix these up, five types of copy, five headlines, five descriptions and five call to action button choices. Facebook then optimises which combination will perform the best for any given person. It also creates videos from your creative sometimes too.


In all five of these options the Facebook algorithm takes over when using them to run a Flash Sale on Facebook. I have used this recently for a client and we got much lower costs and a higher conversion rate on purchases without having to micro manage the campaign when there isn’t time. Never underestimate just how clever Facebook is! Think of these as the ultimate marketing department doing all the work for you.

Why not give them a go and let me know how you get on. If you need more help with how to set up your ads, why not book a Power Hour with me for £97 where we can do some bespoke training. Good luck with your festive campaigns! And don’t forget, I’m always here if you need some help!

Here’s how to test and the reasons why you shouldn’t skip this.

Why Testing your Facebook Ads is Key

Why Testing your Facebook Ads is Key


Testing your Facebook ads is pretty damn important. Test, test and test some more is basically the theme of this blog. Here’s how to test and the reasons why you shouldn’t skip this.

I strongly suggest that you allocate at least 10 to 15% of your ads budget towards testing alone. The reason for this is to keep improving on your ad results and to drive that cost per result down. This will massively help you to deliver quality ads to your audience.

Constantly test different elements of the ad to determine exactly what is successful and what it letting you down. With my long-term monthly clients, I undertake A LOT of testing. I want them to get the best results! Some clients don’t understand why this is so important, but as a seasoned ads strategist, I can quickly tell if something isn’t working as well as it should be and I know I can do better.

There are three major elements to testing your Facebook ads

1. Audience

I always plan out the different personas and test different audience to ascertain which performs better than the others.

Think about their varying interests, different lookalike audiences, a broader audience and so on.

For example, are you best to target all the women in the UK, or those who really like watching the Great British Bake Off for instance?

You may even find that ads perform better when you have grouped a few interests together or perhaps narrowed down on your target audience.

2. Creative

When I talk about the creative, I’m talking about the words, the images, the video or the animation, the headline etc – everything that goes into the creation of your ad itself.

Test which element works best for the ad.

You should also test ad design - whether carousels work best, or maybe collections – drill right down into the detail.

Look at what the headline is, does this have an impact? If so, try differing headlines. Test whether having the price including in the headline makes a difference.

With regard to the copy (words) test long copy against shorter copy. Does copy with emojis in it work better than copy without? What happens when you talk about the lifestyle of the product and how it can improve your life? Yes, I know, there’s a lot to think about!

3. Hook

Hooks are things like “As seen in Cheshire Life” (any ‘as seen in’, or ‘featured on’ works really well), social proof testimonials (screenshots from social media), money off codes, discount offers, free delivery, and so one.

I always recommend stating “free delivery” if you don’t charge for that normally anyway – it really is a huge attraction.

If ever you have won an award, pop this in here as it oozes credibility, quality and trust.

Test one hook at a time and see which works the best.

Run multiple ads

It’s best practice to run at least 10 ads to test against each other. From multiple ads, you’ll see a clear winner!

But you’re not done yet!

Take this clear winner and keep changing it one thing at a time. Test another 10 versions of it.  For instance, if you were testing the image, you would take the winning ad, use exactly the same copy, exactly the same headline, and just change the images. And again, when you get the winner from that, take that version and test something else. Keep trying for better results.

When you see the ads that aren't working within those 10, you can quickly pause them so that you are feeding more of your budget into the other ads that you're testing.

Aim to get them to at least a reach of 500. This should give you a good indication of the soft statistics (like click through rate or landing page conversion).

What results to look for

You need to be looking to lower the cost per conversion (or result of the objective you are focusing on – video views for instance) so keep your eye on this. You’re looking to get this as low as possible.

Check what your click-through-rate (CTR) is too – the higher the number the more people are clicking on it – a good thing!

Aim to beat these metrics every time to make the most out of your budget.

I hope that's helpful, but please do get in touch if you have any questions – it can be a little overwhelming to get your head around testing your Facebook ads at first!

What I don’t want you to do is test just a couple of ads and think that it’s not for you as they’re not working. Facebook Ads need a bit of work to get the momentum going and find the sweet spot, but when the formula is right for you, they really are an amazing marketing tool. Good luck!

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?

Are Black Friday and Christmas Ads more expensive?


Why is it that Black Friday and Christmas ads are said to be more expensive? Before you make any decisions about whether to do an ad for Black Friday or Christmas let’s bust some myths!

I hear people say that they are concerned that it may cost them more to run an ad for these occasions and they won’t see a good return on their investment. It worries me that some people may decide not to run these ads before they learn the truth.

A recent study from Shopify revealed that Facebook marketers view Facebook and Instagram as one of the top-performing marketing channels, especially for e-commerce brands. Simply put, more gets sold on these channels.

So, what this means is that over Black Friday and Christmas, there are going to be many more advertisers and marketers on these platforms. This puts up the costs per sale, sometimes by as much as about 25%.

Why do Black Friday and Christmas ads cost more?

Before I explain why this increase occurs, we need to look at how the Facebook Ad platform works.

When you're putting a Facebook ad on, you are essentially entering an auction. Think of it as going to an auction house where you are bidding for a certain audience to see your ads. Now consider that there are more advertisers who also want this particular audience, the bids keep going higher in an attempt to secure the sale.

As you can imagine over the Black Friday and Christmas season especially, business owners want to be showing their products and their offers to people. And at Christmas, business owners are looking to reach their end of year targets resulting in more and more companies looking to advertise on Facebook.

How to keep your ad costs lower.

It’s not impossible to keep your Black Friday and Christmas Ad costs lower – I bet that’s music to your ears.

Here’s some tips for how:

  • Keep building your warm audiences in your audience section of Facebook ads manager - the people who are visiting your website, signing up to your email list for instance, using your messaging bot, watching your videos on your social media channels.
  • Leverage these warm audiences. Start sending ads to customers and potential customers and get them over to your website and your offers now to segment even warmer audiences.
    • Start advertising your lead magnet before Black Friday or Christmas and build your email list.
    • Get more people onto your website by boosting a post that sends them to your website to read an engaging blog.
    • Send your best-performing organic posts from your Facebook page to a wider cold audience to get new traffic to your website.
    • A great way to build an audience quickly is to send out a video detailing top tips and really adding value to the cold audience. What you are doing here is capturing them to market to later.
  • Don’t think of Black Friday and Christmas as the end of your advertising period. Post-Christmas and January are great times to keep advertising and the cost of ads drops too! Boxing Day sees incredibly high levels of people online – take advantage of that. People are keen to spend any Christmas money they've been given, and they're looking for bargains and sales.
  • The Christmas season is a good time to raise your average order price around this time. Your average order price is how much you would normally make from an average order. Think about how can you increase that. Maybe do special bundles - could you make a special Black Friday bundle rather than a discount that seems like it's a better offer? Allow the customer to buy two or more products together to get a discount. This will get people spending more.
  • Consider creating a landing page that only has special Black Friday or Christmas products on it to narrow their view and encourage a sale.
  • Focus less on competitive audiences. There are some very common audience-targeting options that a lot of people choose, but to keep costs low think a little bit outside of the box for interests to target.
  • Try some different placements. Many people use Facebook newsfeed or Instagram feed, but in actual fact you can sometimes get lower-cost sales if you only target Instagram Stories for instance, or Marketplace. To really make the most out of this use some really good creative that works with the different placement area (tailor your images to be the right size for Stories for instance with GIF images overlaid).

I hope that helps you to see that Black Friday and Christmas Ads don’t need to be expensive if you design your strategy now.

If you'd like any more information about how to run ads over this festive season, please do get in contact with me and we can have a chat. I’d love to hear from you.

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign.

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign

Foundations for your Black Friday Facebook Ad Campaign.


It’s November. Black Friday Facebook ads are being planned left, right and centre!

Are you wondering if you need to be doing some ads but don’t know where to start? Wonder no more, here are the important first steps you must consider to set the best foundations for success.

Prepare and plan for a smooth, well run Black Friday Facebook ad campaign that achieves the results you want.

Here are two crucial steps to begin with broken down into bite-size chunks for you:

#1. Check that all of your back-office elements are correctly set up.

  • This includes the all-important pixel on your website. It’s crucial that its functioning properly.
  • Check the diagnostics in the Facebook Events Manager (within ads manager). It’s key that you're tracking customers and potential customers and that you can optimise your re-targeting.
  • If you're product-based, check that your catalogue is syncing correctly and that there are no issues.

#2. Make sure that your custom audiences are set up.

Create your warm audiences. Often with a Black Friday Facebook ad campaign, you can get far cheaper results (spend less and make more) if you target people who already know who you are and are interested in what you sell.

To do this, you need to set up your custom audiences in Facebook ads manager in the Audiences section.

  • Track people who have visited your website, engaged with your Facebook page or Instagram page and those on your email list (subscribers only to be GDPR safe!). Create one audience for each.
  • Consider who else to target and upload. These could be the people who are watching your videos, people who have purchased from you previously, people who've added items to their cart but not completed the transaction and people who have viewed content online. There are lots of people to think about in this early stage. Who do you want to target with your Black Friday offer?

Now, you’ve set up these custom audiences of interested people you need to think about building these warm audiences some more.

  • I suggest you send out cold audience ads encouraging people to head over to your website - read a blog post, view your products etc. to build up the audience of people who have taken that first step to see who you are and what you sell.
  • Another great idea is to send out your lead magnet ads and start building your email list.
  • Or you could simply boost (not by using the boost button but by setting up an engagement ad) your best performing organic social media posts to reach a wider audience (engagement will build your audience of people who engage with your profile, and clicks through will build your audience of people who visit your website).
  • Videos can work really well for building a warm audience, plus if you share the video from your page into a Facebook group, you can also track people who are in the groups and you know are your ideal clients.

I hope you have found these background tasks helpful to plan your Black Friday Facebook ad campaign - they really will set you up for success. Of course, this is just the start, but one major element that I see people miss when planning their campaigns. Remember it takes time to work out a profitable audience to target with Facebook ads, so in a short time sales period, you don't have that time to really work it out. Using your warm audiences helps to speed up your results.

If you need more support with planning your Black Friday or Christmas Facebook ads please do get in touch – I’d love to help.

Why Use a Retargeting Ad?

Why Use a Retargeting Ad?

Why Use a Retargeting Ad?

You’ve probably heard about retargeting ads and wondered what they are. Let me explain what retargeting ads are in this blog and how they can help to drive your e-commerce ad strategy forward.

Retargeting ads, sometimes known as remarketing ads, are advertisements that re-target people who have taken some sort of action, either on your social media channels, your website or your email list for example.

Mostly, retargeting ads are to target people to help them to complete a decision, on a purchase for instance. They may have visited your website but not bought anything, left something in the basket or not signed up to a workshop - but they HAVE been looking and so we have them recorded.

In a nutshell, retargeting ads keep your brand in front of your ‘bounced traffic’.

Dynamic product ads (DPA)

Dynamic product ads (DPA) are one example of retargeting ads and they’re great for you if you have an e-commerce store.

If you have set up a product catalogue from your website shop and linked it to Facebook Business Manager, you can create a dynamic product ad to remind a person who has been on your website what they have been browsing through.

I see this type of advert a lot when I’ve left something in a shopping basket unbought – it’s a nudge to get me to take action to buy. And it works! I’m often encouraged to head back to the website and complete my purchase once I’m reminded of the items I was looking at.

Let’s say that around 60 to 70% of people who visit your website leave within the first few minutes, these ads target them to remind them of the lovely products you have and to come back and buy them. After all, it is said that it can take up to 10 touches or more to someone before they buy, so don’t be afraid to get in front of their eyes!

If you’re a service-based business, you can use retargeting ads to follow up with people who have visited your website to browse your services too. You could, for instance, send anybody who has visited a specific page on your website, maybe even your website at all, your lead magnet ad which directs them to your website and straight into your sales funnel. This is great practice, as these people are already warm leads!

Making the most out of people’s comments

It’s great when someone takes the time to comment on one of your social media posts – the content must have really resonated with them. Again, don’t waste this warm lead. Instead create a retargeting ad just for them – maybe a specific piece of content that goes another step further with the information you shared originally, or even a video to take them to the next level of your customer journey.

If they interact with this next ad again, then it’s time to offer something to them, perhaps a free introductory call. You’re still being really helpful so don’t be fearful of appearing salesy at this stage.

Think about the ways you can use a retargeting ad

I hope this has given you food for thought. There are so many creative ways you can use a retargeting ad. Just remember its purpose; to influence a lead to take positive action.

Give me a call

If you need help with this strategy and would like someone (like me!) to help set up the functionality to make it work, plus more to track your traffic activity, please get in touch today for a free discovery call (a chat and a cuppa basically!). I’d love to hear from you.

How long should a Facebook Ad run for?

How long should a Facebook Ad run for?

How long should a Facebook Ad run for?


How long should a Facebook Ad run for? I do have an answer to this, but first I’d like to explain what goes on behind the scenes with a Facebook ad. There’s a lot that happens that influences this decision - you’ll be surprised!

What exactly happens when you boost a post or publish a Facebook ad?

The first thing to happen when you post a Facebook ad, or boost an existing post, is that it goes into the dreaded review stage.  This can last from one hour up to 24 hours, or even more.

Once it has been reviewed, it becomes active. Facebook will then get stuck in. It takes time for Facebook to identify your objective, who it needs to target the ad to, where these people are and most importantly who is going to take action.

Facebook will be on your side and will want your ad to do well, so I guess we can let it off for taking its time over this necessary step. It will wait to see who responds to your ad so it can refine its targeting and test the audience. Clever stuff isn’t it?

Why Facebook ads need a lot of impressions

To understand more about how long a Facebook Ad should run for, you need to understand about how it gathers signs of results. Impressions are when your ad is delivered to different people on Facebook or Instagram, not ‘seen’ – as this is classed as Reach. I know some ad strategists who say that you need to wait until your ad has around 1,000 impressions before seeing a marker of the results – companies with big budgets can achieve this is no time.

The logic behind this is that impressions gives Facebook a better chance of analysing how people have reacted to the ad. So Facebook actually recommends getting up to 8,000 impressions before it has got a good idea of what the results are.

Depending on your budget this could take up to a week to achieve.

So to work out how long to let a Facebook ad run for, let’s do some planning based on that timescale (more realistic for independent businesses and SMEs):

  • Establish how long you want your promotion to run for - is there a specific date for your promotion? Is the ad for a specific event? Work back from that.
  • Factor in the time needed for Facebook to review the ad (48 hours to be safe)
  • Add in time to test, and possibly retest the audience – this could be another week for instance if the audience bombs initially and you need to try a new one.
  • Expect it to take up to a week to gather impressions.
  • When your ad achieves the expected level of impressions, Facebook ramps up the momentum needed to get you some great results. This can take up to another week.

=     Three weeks have passed already!

Don’t panic - give Facebook ads a chance

I’m afraid patience matters when it comes to Facebook ads. It’s not as simple as letting a Facebook ad run for a couple of days and hoping that everyone who needs to see it does so within hours of you clicking that publish button.

To see the results you want and deserve, it takes a little time.

For the best results you need to trust Facebook and its algorithms – it will work out the type of people who are responding, test the new audience, refine its process and then pick up the results you need. It just needs a bit of time.

So, what’s the answer to how long should you let a Facebook ad run for?

Ok, here is my answer. For ads with a specific promotion date (events, 5-day challenges, launches etc) I would recommend running an ad for around three weeks prior to the date to warm up audiences and give Facebook the time it needs. For evergreen ads, which run continually, I’d recommend three months for optimum results.

If you’ve any more questions or need support with your next Facebook or Instagram ad campaign please get in touch.

5-day challenge promotion

How to Prepare for a 5-Day Challenge Promotion

How to prepare for a 5-day challenge promotion


Should you prepare for a 5-day challenge promotion using Facebook ads, or just whack them up there and hope for the best? Well you know the saying ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day’? The same goes for your launch.

You’ll be surprised just what goes into the preparation of Facebook advertising for a 5-day challenge promotion.

In this blog, I’ll guide you through the preparation stages crucial for a successful campaign.

Five-day challenge promotion

The ‘five-day challenges’ that many of us have taken part in, or seen on our social media feeds, are a fantastic way of gaining skills in a bite-size, simple to understand, fun way. It’s no wonder they’re so popular.

They are also an effective way to build your email list with prospective clients or customers keen to learn what you have to teach.

I know that a lot of time and effort is put into compiling the content for the challenge so PLEASE don’t forget to dedicate as much time into the preparation of the Facebook ads.

Let’s face it, alongside your organic promotion, the Facebook ads are a crucial part of getting members to sign up to the challenge in the first place.

The 5-day challenge launch timeline for Facebook ads

I’m delighted by the results my clients have had with their five-day challenges. Part of this success is the planning and preparation that I undertake before we set the ads live.

But don’t be fooled – the preparation time for any launch is not something you can do quickly. Including the 5-day challenge promotion period, I ask for 8 weeks total to prepare and set up everything ready to launch.

Yes, you read that right – the preparation work takes around two months!

I have been asked to do it in less time than this, which I can do of course, however it incurs a double-time fee as I end up working out of hours to fit all the preparation work in to the time.

Here’s what is involved:

  • The client has to be set up in business manager for Facebook. Just this pretty simple task alone can take up to a week if there are problems to overcome like forgotten passwords etc!
  • The Facebook pixel must be set up correctly and tested. This is the code placed on your website to collect data needed for some of the ads.
  • The landing page or the thank you page to be linked to the ads must be created correctly and tested for a smooth customer journey.
  • If integration is necessary, I need to ensure that all of the partner sites are set up properly. This can take up to two weeks.
  • The content for the Facebook ads must be written. But, before this can be done, time is spent researching the audience, target market and the client personas must be mapped out. Time is also needed for me to understand the product/service being advertised.
  • Relevant and eye-catching images or videos must be created.
  • Once the content and images have been created, sign off is required by the client.
  • If needed, edits are actioned.
  • Following approval, the ad itself needs to be set up in ads manager.

And, that’s not all. Facebook Ads Manager can be really slow to work with, which can be infuriating!

Don’t forget time to promote the launch

I like to advise at least three weeks for a 5-day challenge promotion. This gives us a week to test and optimise the audiences plus identify which ads are performing better than others.

The final two weeks of the live campaign is when we really maximize the budget to focus on getting as many leads as possible.

Upselling after the 5-day challenge promotion

Fantastic news! Your 5-day challenge promotion was a success, you ran the challenge without any glitches and you’re now in a great position to promote your amazing offer.

This is when retargeting ads can be a great chance to power up your promotion. Targeting people who were interested in the challenge, but didn’t sign up, plus all those names who signed up too, to get them over to the landing page for your paid program.

Lessons learned and how to apply them

Included in my service is an online report that you have access to throughout the launch which shows the main data you need to know (amount spent, amount of registrations) plus more detailed data including who is signing up (broken down into age, gender, location), best performing audiences, best performing ads and my lessons learned that I have noticed. All the data generated can help prepare for Facebook ads for the next campaign you may want to do.

Contact me to talk about your 5-day challenge promotion

if you’re planning a five-day challenge yourself, get in touch and see how I can help you make the most of it and upsell your service to the max! If you’ve been using organic promotion up until now and have a good conversion rate at the end your challenge, now is the time to super power your launch to get even more targeted leads into your challenge so that your return is greater. Check out the package here. 

Why has your Facebook Ad been Rejected? Alex Platt Facebook ads management warrington cheshire

Why has your Facebook Ad been Rejected?

Have you had Facebook ads rejected?


It’s so frustrating when you’ve put so much effort into coming up with a great ad only for it to be rejected. So how can you stop getting your Facebook ads rejected?

Facebook has got a LOT stricter in the last six months, probably due to the increase of online businesses using its ad platform. So, they don’t like it when you don’t play to their policies.

But there is a greater worry when you get ad rejections. Did you know that any rejection gets noted in your account quality section of Facebook ads Manager? Too many and Facebook may close down your account!

To save yourself time – not to mention stress – this blog is here to help you get Facebook ad savvy.

Check Facebook’s Policies

This social media giant is big on rules. It pays to head over to the Facebook Ad Policy page, get familiar with them and check through them before you publish an ad.

There’s comprehensive information under these headings:

  • Overview: Understanding common points of confusion.
  • The Advert Review Process: What Facebook considers and what happens after the review has taken place.
  • Steps to take if rejected. Make edits and appeal.
  • Prohibited content. The 30 standards to be met.
  • Restricted content. The 13 subjects to avoid.
  • Video Ads. What is deemed to be disruptive content and entertainment related.
  • Targeting. Must not discriminate.
  • Positioning. Must be relevant to audience and content.
  • Lead Adverts. Check the list of the type of lead advert that would require written consent.
  • Brand Assets. How to avoid copyright and trademark wrangles.
  • Data Use Restrictions. How to use data safely and legally.
  • Things You Should Know. An extra section of yet more stuff that, if ignored, could result in a rejection.

There’s a lot to get your head around and it can seem overwhelming at first, but please don’t let all the rules put you off – Facebook ads achieve great results when executed correctly.

Common reasons why ads get rejected

Time and again I get asked to check over an ad because the creator cannot find a reason why it was rejected.

To help you get it right first time, here’s my quick checklist for you:

  • Check your keywords as certain ones will trigger an automatic rejection. For example, don’t use the following: income, career, job, money, sales, profits as Facebook definitely don’t want MLM being promoting on their platform and any ads that they think are promoting quick income can fall into this category.
  • Don’t use swear words. And don’t try to hide them by using asterisks or other symbols in the middle of a word, Facebook will know what you’re trying to do and you will still get that dreaded rejected ad. Grammar also comes under this policy heading, so always spell check your copy.
  • Don’t mention personal attributes - topics such as depression, anxiety or wanting to lose weight for instance. Using the word ‘you’ and ‘feeling’ in the same sentence can be a big trigger and end up with getting an ad rejected. Facebook don’t like you calling out other people directly, or highlighting negative attributes – after all they want Facebook to be a positive and happy place. Instead, try writing your copy in the first person, as a story about yourself and focus on the positive outcomes instead of negative problems.
  • Don’t use before and after images in your images for ads. This is a big one in the fitness niche. If you do use an image of a body, never zoom in on a particular body part as, again, this may be seen to be making a health claim. Take a whole-body photo instead and talk about their transformation in the copy.
  • Don’t use the logo for Facebook, Instagram or WhatsApp in your ad as this gives the impression that the Facebook brand endorses the product or service being promoted in the ad.
  • Have a look at doing a free learning platform called Facebook Blueprint which walks you through everything you need to know about Facebook Ads and its policies. It’s a good starting point to learn all about what you can and can’t do.
  • When writing your content have the policies open on a tab and keep double checking that you are not breaching any of them.

Get brownie points and avoid the rejection

Facebook’s aim is to provide a positive user experience for their community which is why they are so strict with the ads – they don’t want to see anything negative and will take action to enforce their rules.

  • Always check your content and your images against the rules.
  • Make sure that the content and the images on your landing page adhere to the rules because Facebook will scan that too. There are also other landing page policies, so take a look at that too in the list.
  • It’s also wise to check your website and make sure that you have a privacy policy, terms and conditions, a cookie notice, and a Facebook disclaimer at the bottom stating that it's not part of Facebook and that your company is not aligned with Facebook.

Contact me

I’ve dealt with quite a few business owners with disabled ad accounts in the last few months resulting from having their Facebook ads rejected. Often because they have been advertising themselves without knowing anything about the ad policies that they then end up breaching.

It can be a huge cost to a business if your ad account is disabled as you are unable to set up a new one.

If you don’t want to risk your Facebook ads account and instead want help with your next Facebook Ad campaign, please do get in touch – I can’t wait to help!