So I’m one of those strange creatures that actually LOVES seeing ads in my Facebook newsfeed. It’s part of my job to teach small business owners what works and what doesn’t with Facebook, so I’m always in analysis mode, looking at the copy, ad image and checking where the links take me.
Last night I came across a great example from Etihad Airways on how NOT to run a Facebook Ad campaign.
Disclaimer: This blog post is being written from the purest intentions of teaching others what works with Facebook ads and posts. It’s not meant as an attack on Etihad Airways, who generally seem to be doing a great job with their social media presence.
Here’s the ad that I saw:
I thought, hell yeah, I want to win Business Class seats to the #BestSeat in the house. I checked that the ad was being run by an official Etihad Airways Page (there’s a LOT of fake airline pages out there) then I clicked ‘Like Page’. And it’s what happened next that really confused me. Instead of finding out how to win said seats, the next Like Ad popped onto my screen.
I did a search for the Etihad Airways Page and got the following options:
So I’ve already had to turn into a bit of a detective to even find the page that was running the ad. I chose the top option and made it to their Facebook page. After scrolling down through a few posts I found this post:
Aha! This is what I wanted.
I clicked on the link in the post and I finally ended up on the custom tab with information about how I can win those Business Class seats!
So after quite a few clicks mixed with some frustration and bemusement, I finally found where I believe Etihad Airways wanted me to be in the first place.
What Can We Learn From This?
The goal of a ‘Like Ad’ is to get people to like your page. What Etihad Airways were teasing us with in the copy of the ad was not achievable with the Like Ad. So it left me feeling rather cheated that I’d just liked their page and wasn’t rewarded with “finding out more”. What I suspect was their actual goal was to get people to interact with the custom tab on their page, and to achieve that, they needed to run an ad containing a link to the custom tab.
Etihad should have used the page post and turned it into an ad. Then, with 1 click, people would have landed on the custom tab where they could then have ‘Liked’ the page and entered the competition. Simple.
So when running ads on Facebook (or any other platform) you need to be clear on what you want to achieve and make sure that your ads will actually result in the desired outcome.
There’s also an additional learning point from their use of the #BestSeat hashtag. It would have been much better for Etihad to have created a unique hashtag for their campaign, rather than a generic one that is used by millions of people every day. If you’re running an event or competition, try to think outside the box and come up with a unique identifier that instantly connects the conversation to your brand or business.
I hope this post has been useful in helping you understand the need to be clear on your goals, and the difference between a Like Ad and an Ad containing a link to other content. I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below.
Oh, and if you live in Australia and want to enter the #BestSeat competition, here’s the link: http://ngx.me/lH209L. You’re welcome 😉