Keep Your (Ad’s) Promises!

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If you sell lots of different stuff, and your ad prominently features one item — even if that item is merely a stand-in for a whole category — guess what prospective customers want to see after they click your ad and arrive at your landing page?

 

The pictured item. Really.

 

But more often than not, the very cool, funky, and unusual item pictured is no where to be found. I’ve seen it happen for Zappos Ads, Amazon Ads, Facebook ads for fashion and design retailters, and plenty of others. It’s an epidemic of failed promises.

 

See, every hyperlink is a promise: a promise to take the clicker to the place they expected to go to when they clicked, a place that’s implied by the hyperlink text or the ad.

 

When the clicker ends up somewhere else, they feel duped and betrayed. Not a good way to begin a sales conversation.

 

Here’s a perfect example:

 

Joss and Main FB Ad

 

So, here’s a pretty solid ad for Joss & Main, prominently featuring a very solid teak club chair not only in the picture, but also in the headline and body copy.

 

So what do you think I was expecting to see post-click?

 

Unfortunately, here’s what I actually saw:

 

The Joss & Main Landing Page

No teak chair!

 

Now, I understand the desire to have the sign-up form as a gateway to browsing. I don’t necessarily recommend it, but I understand it.

 

But what’s to stop them from showing the teak chair in the background of the page, promising the prospective customer a closer look if only they’ll fill out that pesky form?

 

Yeah, the extra step of filling out the form would still feel annoying, but the picture of the teak chair would at least let me know that filling out the form was worthwhile because I was on-track to get that additional information I clicked-through for in the first place.

 

Plus, I’d feel a whole lot better about the trustworthiness of the retailer. As it was, I ended up feeling like a bait and switch had been pulled on me, so I left the site for good. Sale lost.

 

Don’t let that happen to your Facebook Ads: make sure the post-click experience keeps the promises made by the ad and you’ll end up with much higher CPI scores.

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  • Eric

    what is a CPI score? googled it; all that came up was ‘corrupt prescriptions index’

  • johnC

    Isn’t it good in lead generation? I agree that it takes additional effort before diverting you to the exact item as the ads described but in the end they managed to generate lead then a sales pitch could be made. Considering that not all who are trying to see your site is a buyer, most of the time they need to be called on the phone for a sales pitch. Maybe there is a bit of differences between a “just curious” and “true seeker”. What do you think? – Just a thought though.