black clock
6 min

Why Your Facebook Ads Aren't Working: A Rescue Guide

Facebook serves as a powerhouse for advertising, seamlessly connecting customers to products. However, this engine sometimes needs a tune-up of settings or enhanced creative for ads to actually work.

If your Facebook ads aren't working, there are various factors you need to pay attention to, ensuring that your creativity isn't wasted or created in vain.

Let's dive into why your Facebook ads are not working.

The settings sabotaging your Facebook ads performance

Money makes the world go around, and so does Facebook. That's why one of the key elements in your ads setup is how you've configured the ad budget. In fact, issues with budgeting can be a primary cause of Facebook ads not working.

In campaign budget optimization, certain ad sets or ads may deliver less, but the primary goal is to optimize the overall campaign performance. So, don't stress over individual ad delivery.

Evaluating ad performance with daily budgeting can lead to incorrect conclusions. To get the right idea, monitor ads for at least one week. This way, you'll know if your Facebook ad has hit the daily budget limit.

If your budgeting is set up, whether at the campaign or ad set level, you may find Facebook ads not running, not delivering enough, or being slowed down. This could be due to basic settings.

Change this if your Facebook ads not working

  • Restrictive run hours - Look out for gaps in ad schedules and consider loosening the schedule;
  • Restrictive spend limits on ad sets - If you're using CBO, remove spend limits on ad sets to test if they're blocking delivery;
  • Bid cap or cost per result goal - The set amount may be limiting, so consider removing or increasing it;
  • Expensive performance goals - If you don't want to increase your budget, try selecting a performance goal higher in the marketing funnel;
  • Narrow or wide audience - If you create multiple ad sets with similar audiences, your ad sets are competing against each.
Settings that might be the cause of your Facebook ads not working.
Your ads can be rescued with few tweaks in settings.

Change this if you have laggy ads

  • Check the activity history - Extensive pausing can disrupt the system's ability to optimize delivery and allocate budget on schedule;
  • Changes to budget or schedule near the end of the day - Your campaign will underspend on a particular day but compensate by spending more the next day;
  • Aggressive bidding by other advertisers - Your cost cap or bid cap may not be high enough to be competitive, resulting in underperformance.

3 common performance drop scenarios and fixes 

Your Facebook ad's performance might be suffering due to basic issues. To rescue your killer creative from decline, here are 3 common scenarios that occur and how to troubleshoot them:

#1 Facebook ads not working at all 

If you find yourself with Facebook ads not working, check the Delivery column status in Ads Manager.

  • If you spot an error icon in the Delivery column, that's likely the cause of your ads not running. Hover over it to find out what to do next;
  • If you spot a pending icon, your ad might be in draft, scheduled for later, or pending review. Hover to find out what needs adjusting, but keep in mind that changes may take up to 8 hours;
  • If you see a gray dot in the Delivery Column, your ads are turned off. This could be because you deactivated them, an automated rule did, or they've reached their scheduled end.

#2 Ads aren't getting enough results

  • It's normal for some of your ads to get results while others don't. Facebook determines which ads will generate the best results and doesn't deliver other ads in the same ad set or campaign. If you wish for all your ads to deliver equally, consider creating an A/B test;
  • If your ad set’s Delivery status is Learning or Learning Limited, you can optimize your setup to get better results;
  • If the Delivery status shows Bid Limited or Cost Limited, cost control might be the cause of Facebook ads not delivering. Choose the highest volume bid strategy or raise your cost control;
  • If the ad frequency is high or the Delivery status displays Creative Fatigue, your ads are experiencing creative fatigue. You can either add a new creative or expand your audience
  • If your ad set has high auction overlap, other ad sets might win ad auctions. You can either combine similar ad sets or turn off overlapping ad sets.
Examples of engaging ads in fashion.
Say goodbye to creative fatigue with engaging ads.

#3 Ads running with high cost

If your ad spend is too high, this can negatively impact your ROAS driving your performance down. Set a cost control to make sure your costs don’t exceed your budget. And if your ad finished the learning phase but is still showing unstable performance, try this:

  • Expand or modify your audience. Avoid adjusting specific segments to allow the delivery system to find cost-effective opportunities;
  • Use new placements to find a larger audience with low cost conversions;
  • Improve your creative. No surprise there! If your ad relevance diagnostics score is below average, your creative and post-click experience requires your immediate attention.

Challenges beyond settings: The role of creative

Okay, the settings are not the problem. What now? Well, the “wrong” creative might be driving down performance.

This means that your creative has to attract attention much faster in order to transform into profit.

Does this mean you need to hire 20 more designers to keep up with creative for your ads? Yes, if you had the budget on standby to perform CPR on your dying Facebook ad.

Most brands don’t, and even for the ones that do, it’s a massive drain on resources when there’s a much smarter way of doing this - creative on auto-pilot.

Your ads aren't personalized enough

In a battle for attention, personalized ads win. Top agencies and brands have been using Facebook's dynamic creative optimization, and you should too.

To make powerful dynamic ads use geo-targeting, weather localization or make feed-based product ads. This not only drives conversions but also prevents ad fatigue, a common cause of poor performance.

Personalization makes dynamic ads powerful.
Create personalized ads at scale with Hunch.

With dynamic creative optimization, mix and play with ad components, put them into Facebook and spin the wheel. Facebook first presents each combination to a smaller audience, identifies the winning combination, and then showcases it to a broader audience through relevant ad placements.

And the only way to truly test what works is to scale the idea of dynamic creative optimization to massive proportions. Automatically launch lots of ads quick and easy, with creative automation.

You can’t keep up with making tailored ads at scale

Creative automation is the answer to slow creative processes, generic ad experiences, and inconsistent design. If you're a creative strategist always stuck in the cycle of manually resizing or editing thousands of ads,  creative automation is your answer.

It allows you to produce faster and make enhanced ads on auto-pilot, leaving more time for building the best creative. This way, you are making the ads relevant while the production is happening seamlessly in the background.

All this just by connecting your data feed to a creative automation platform. For instance, Hunch’s Creative Studio enables agencies to create and launch 1000s of ads automatically with dynamic creative templates.

Take control over Facebook ads with creative

When multiple updates to your go-to tools roll out in a single day, it's crucial that ads work like a charm.

When your Facebook ads stop working, your natural advertiser instinct might push you toward technical tweaks. Yet, with Facebook increasingly leaning into new Meta experience with Advantage+, soon there won't be much left to fine-tune in your settings.

What will remain is creative and how your ads stand out from the rest. Take control in your hands with creative and make sure your Facebook ads are delivering. Curious how Hunch helps agencies in different categories? Check out creative examples.