Semalt Tells About The Most Common Advertising Mistakes

Top 6 Mistakes To Avoid When Running Ad Campaigns - Kangaroo Advertising

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. The Goal of Advertising
  3. 10 Common Advertising Mistakes to Avoid
  4. Conclusion


While advertising is the face of a business or brand, it is also hard work. Too many things come into play to conduct the perfect ad that will bring sales, increase awareness, and improve brand visibility. That is why it is easy, among all these thoughts, for beginners and small businesses to make mistakes when running ads. 

But this is not about the mistakes you can make - it is about the most common ones that many ad marketers don't even think about. Many times, these mistakes are usually overlooked but they significantly affect your ad campaign results negatively. With that in mind, this article contains an outline of the most common, overlooked mistake advertising marketers and managers make when running ad campaigns.

The Goal of Advertising

In three words, advertising is done to inform, influence, and remind. This means that you can create an ad to either communicate information to your target audience, persuade them to buy an idea, or patronize a product / service, or it is carried out to remind the audience about a brand or product.

A good ad campaign is meant to increase brand awareness (get the audience to be better familiarized with a brand, product, or service), grow the number of traffic that reaches your site (mobile or desktop), and boost engagement (even on social media). 

Other secondary aims of good advertising include the generation of leads, improvement of the target audience's attention towards the business, development of the brand, and retention of customers. 

Any result other than the ones mentioned above means that there is something wrong somewhere. While the list for troubleshooting might be lengthy, you are likely making one or more of the common mistakes that are made during advertising. 

10 Common Advertising Mistakes to Avoid

The following are the most common, overlooked mistakes that could be stopping you from seeing your desired ad results:

Forgetting to research your target audience

Before reading the full text under this section, take a moment to answer the following questions:
If you cannot give precise and clear answers to these questions, then you are about to make the first common mistake in advertising. Running an ad or a campaign without defining your target audience is the most delicious recipe for a waste of money and time. You need to know who your customers are so you won't be advertising to people that will never buy from you (or are not in the position to buy from you).

Imagine advertising baby diapers to teenagers, or makeup products to men - that's why a definition of your target audience is necessary. 

It would be a big mistake if you just began designing the perfect ad graphic, the best texts, and posted. 

Making use of a single ad medium

It is predictable to 'play it safe'. Many small businesses are scared to take the leap and invest in different advertising mediums because of the fear that they might lose money or waste resources too early. Little do they know that playing it safe is dangerous - and is one of the common mistakes that advertising marketers face. 

To get the best result, it is recommended that you spread your ad campaigns across different channels and mediums for better results. Your target audience can't all be in one channel. So when you use a single medium, you are limiting yourself to only a fraction of your results. 

Undermining image qualities

'Content is king' - they say. But images are sitting right next to the content. Not just any kind of image, quality, relevant, high-resolution, and attractive images. Undermining the power of great images as part of your ad is another mistake that can affect your click rates drastically. Instead of people clicking your ad and getting to know more about the business, brand, product, or service, odds are - they'll be clicking away. 

But how do you know when an image is right for your ad? As mentioned earlier, it has to be of high resolution. If the image is blurry or full of noise and grains, then you should not use it. 

Similarly, images that are too large or too small should be eliminated as well. Make sure that the images are relevant to the content and context of the ad. Finally, avoid copyrighting without acknowledging image ownership. To get the best result, you can sign up with an expert provider for image optimization.

Excluding texts 

On the other hand, some ads have all the properties of a great image but only one text that says 'Click here or 'Buy now'. While this is somewhat effective - to a small extent, it is also a mistake that could be costing you good ad results. Remember that good content is king. Your targeted customers cannot fully understand what your ad is about with just pictures - add a copy.

When adding text, hers are a few things to remember:

Applying the wrong or too many colors

Some colors are specified for certain products and they have the power to interest, confuse, or bore your customers. So when putting together your ad, pay attention to what colors you use. Make sure your texts are visible and the different colors are complementary. 

Focusing too much on the brand

Another mistake that's very common while running ads is highlighting your brand excessively. Against many beliefs, your ad is not supposed to be 100% about you, your product, or your brand. Though your purpose is to advertise a product, remember the goal - to inform, convince, and remind. 

Hence, include a small part that 'informs' your customers about the product, then move on to convincing them. The best way to convince your customers during an ad is not to talk about the technical details and specifications of your product. Neither is it the time to mention how your company has been around for 562,000 years with lots of experience. 

Rather, what you should do is focus on why you believe it is useful for them, how it beats other products (using real-life examples), and how it can bring the solution. When designing an ad, remember this: 'How is your product going to solve the problems your customers are faced with?"

Posting on just any publication

Aside from the mistakes involved with designing the ad, you could be making mistakes also while publishing it. Posting your ad everywhere is less productive than you think it is. Not only will it make your brand look visionless, but you will also waste time and resources on an ad that is bound to fail.

If your brand / product is about hair and hair products for men and women, target publications that are related to what you do. Posting these kinds of ads on publications like Forbes, or Business Insider would be highly ineffective. 

Running solo ads

Just one ad will not do the trick. You need to be consistent and frequent - keep your brand on top of your customers' minds. Recall that reminder is a big part of the advertisement so after an ad has run its course, place another one. 

Running too many ads 

On the other hand, when you run too many ads, you might also run into another common mistake. The aim is not to create a lot of ads, converting traffic into sales is. So make sure that you put enough time and effort into creating your ads. It is better to have 5 effective ads than have 50 that are just mere noise. 

Nonchalance to website SEO

Finally, the biggest mistake of all is believing that a good ad will do the job. Yes, it will get customers to know about you or get them interested in your product. But it will also lead them to your website. If you have an unstructured website, then you would likely lose your customers. 

Your website has to have an attractive, relative, and minimalist landing page. The pages should be easy to navigate through and the aesthetics should be on point. There is more to website SEO and how to optimize your website for sales and generation of traffic, but the basic key is to make sure it is well-presented and well-structured.



Running an ad is more than creating texts, adding a random photo that appeals to you, and sending it out to any publication you think is popular. You have to research who your target audience is, use different mediums, and get high-quality images. Texts, colors and ad frequency is also important to get the right ad. Prioritize how your product can help your customers and optimize your website SEO, then you will see changes in your ad results. 

If you need to learn more about the subject of SEO and website promotion, we invite you to visit our Semalt blog.