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Advertising Copy Quick Tips

There are a lot of “don’ts” and “can’ts” when it comes to advertising words and images. These don’t necessarily apply to organic posts. 

Therefore, if you’re boosting a post, that post becomes an ad, and you may have words or images that are big fat “NO-NO’S.”

Often, these policy violations result in an ad being rejected, in which case, you can edit and resubmit. In the worst-case scenario, they shut down your ad account and don’t allow you to advertise. 

When an ad is rejected, the reason is often not clear. Sometimes it’s the image. Sometimes it’s the video. Sometimes it’s the copy. 

Here’s a quick list of some of the things you cannot do or have in your ads. I’m listing the items that are most relevant to what you’d likely advertise. 

You can view the complete list (and I highly recommend you bookmark the page and really get to know these policies)

Facebook/Instagram advertising policies

Google advertising policies

You cannot call out medical conditions that would directly label someone who clicks or interacts with your ad. 

Examples:

  • If you have pain, click here. 
  • If you have diabetes, we have a program for you. 
  • Do you want to lose weight by Christmas? 

Potential solutions:

  • Avoid using second-person in the copy (don’t use the word “you” in any of your text).
  • Use third-person and describe what other people have gone through.
  • Use first-person and describe the kinds of people you work with.
  • Offer commands.

Examples:

  • Patients with pain have found our program to be helpful.
  • Our program is designed for people with type 2 diabetes, and our patients have enjoyed incredible results.
  • Learn more about our program.
  • Sign up before the doors close. 

Unless you go through a rigorous application and approval process, you cannot advertise supplements on Facebook/Instagram. 

Best Practice: Avoid talking about the supplements specifically in your ad copy and definitely do not include images in your ad copy. 

We’ve probably all seen these, but they’re technically not allowed in ads. 

So you cannot show someone who is in pain in one frame of a video or in an image and then show that person happy and playing tennis in the next. 

The policy here is implying a guarantee or an unreasonable outcomes.  

Ad content must not imply or attempt to generate negative self-perception in order to promote diet, weight loss, or other health-related products.

You’ll need to be clever about your goal here. Again, with any “weight loss” program, weight loss isn’t actually the goal, it’s the byproduct. 

Refer to the OTHER benefits of your program to see what else you can focus on in your ad. 

Example: 

Many women approaching menopause tend to gain weight due to reduction in estrogen levels, as well as difficulty sleeping, hot flashes, and grumpy mood. Discover how our programs helps patients make small habit changes to improve daily life.

I’ve drilled home the importance of having a specific audience to talk to, but we can’t call out specific things, like religion or sexual orientation.

You cannot show someone holding a joint or indicating pain. That falls under the medical conditions. 

You also cannot show too much skin (I don’t want to get into the hypocrisy around what we are often seeing) – because it’s deemed “nudity.”

Also classified as nudity:

  • The pelvic region on a skeleton.
  • A computer-generated genderless human-like figure in which the pelvic area is visible.
  • A computer-generated or drawn image of human  musculature without skin in which the pelvic area is visible. 

You can, however, show an x-ray image of half the pelvis. 

Advertising is so much fun, isn’t it (insert sarcasm here)?

Other fun things that have come up in my years of advertising: 

You cannot use ALL CAPS too much. In fact, avoid it. 

Sometimes ads that have been approved and are running will suddenly be rejected. Sometimes this is because of a new policy in place, and it truly violates that. Sometimes it’s the Facebook bots just rejecting ads. 

Sometimes Facebook will reject your ad because of something they see on your landing page. Yes, they’re judging your landing page. This is more related to popups and images than to the copy itself. 

You can make more direct requests on your landing page, and show before and afters, but you cannot have the scantily clad skeletons with their pelvic regions showing. 

Again, please review and understand the advertising policies, and if you have questions, please ask. Most of my advertising experience is in medicine, so I know these policies very well. 

When in doubt, be very conservative and reserved.

Facebook/Instagram advertising policies

Google advertising policies