Facebook Ads Rogues Gallery: The Good, the Bad & the Inexplicable!

Facebook ads can be horrible, awesome and (sometimes) downright perplexing or creepy, whether due to targeting, images, headlines, or body copy.

From icky peccadilloes to obvious winners, this post shares eye-catching Facebook ads from the last few months, as well as the reasons why. We’ll start with some of the notable losers and then highlight obvious winners.

As you read on for some obtuse Facebook ads case study fun, remember that the “winners” and “losers” that follow are in this writer’s opinion. You may disagree (and if so, tell us in the comments).

Facebook Ad Losers


This Firebelly store ad loses big on several counts. Or should I say small? The image is tiny and zoomed out. The body copy is, well… “Sparse.” How did this ad get through Facebook editorial anyway?


Buzzer! This may be one of the worst Facebook ad images ever. Think the headline and body copy could be a bit more descriptive?


In the WTF category, this ad showed up in aimClear CEO Marty Weintraub’s Facebook account the other day. Dear justanswer.jp, there is nothing about Marty’s profile to indicate he speaks Japanese. This is targeting gone idiotic. What a waste. Who is that guy and why do we care?


Apartments and real estate seem to be common trash receptacles for terrible Facebook ad images. Zoom in on the pictures people. Zoom in!


We suggest you make your image a bit more enticing. The body copy rambles like a ’68 Chevy in the desert.


Ummm, I don’t think I’d want to learn lead gen’ from the company that placed this ad. It reeks of spam, from the unreadable tiny-text in the image to the run-on URL. Ewww.


Sure, lots of ladies are into laser hair removal. I understand. Would someone please explain to me why this picture is best to sell the service? Is that thing actually attached to her lip? Whose hand is that on the right? Anyone else creeped out?

Excellent Facebook Ads


Amex ads are consistently great. The headline and the first line of body copy are questions. The image has built in contrast and leans towards ad copy. There is a “Click here” for the benefit call to action. Bravo!


Hipmunk has roared onto the Facebook ads scene with their hot headlines and benefit touting body copy, well targeted to travelers. It’s cool that they got the all caps body copy through Facebook editorial, because it’s against Facebook’s rules. Rock on, Hipmunk!


Reputation Changer caught our eye in a big way with this smeared blood-like graffiti motif. This is a great image. The body copy is slick, laced with benefits and very pro. Great ad.



These two recruitment ads came from our shop and were gigantic winners, targeted at employees working at Minneapolis PR firms we know have recently downsized. For $83.34 we recruited a staff member for our Saint Paul office. Out of about 60 clicks, we got five resumes, of which four were great.

The images are classic attention getters that pop out of the Facebook sidebar. From the expletives that kick off the first ad to the ® trust citation, these ads push all the buttons.


This is a killer ad. Just killer.


Lately black-framed background fills with high contract illustrations are hot. The text in the image is big enough and the whole thing has a great feel. We love the words “Forever Hacked” in an ad that has the words, “Trick” and “Dead” in the headline.


From out testing, we believe this ad was targeted to single fathers who are into being Christian. Wow.


This ad, targeted to those who like the Grateful Dead, has it all going on. The headline and image speak directly to the demographic. The language is all about ’60s vernacular. Rockin’, dude!


The awesome image and compelling headline are immediate attention grabbers. The pink, red and purple shades drive people to the compelling face.

Her hand points users’ eyes to the body copy, which is confident. The 34 percent text is on the left, just above the pointing hand. We love the “!” in the headline. Outstanding…


Well, the red background is badass. Again, Facebook’s uneven enforcement of rules let this all caps body copy through editorial. The dude looks a lot like the people one might actually see at casinos. This is a great ad.


I’m scared and curious. Are you? Who is that lady?


Sometimes sparse text tells the whole story. It raises curiosity. What is an “Upriser?” Would you click to find out? The image is zoomed out, which we think rarely works. In this case it seems to.


Orange images cut right through the blue, white and gray FB template. Burning money is a compelling image. The —– treatment and all caps’ drives the eyeball to the call for action. Nice.

Stay tuned for another installment of, “Facebook Ads Rogues Gallery!” Please let us know what you think of these ads, if you agree with our assessments or not. Happy marketing!

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