Digital Marketing Guides
Did you recently have a Facebook ad rejected where they cited the personal attributes policy? Unfortunately, this is common.
Facebook’s personal attributes policy concerning ad campaigns can be confusing. You may see your ads be removed or banned because of this policy, creating a frustrating situation for you and your business.
Facebook, now Meta, wants to create a positive user experience for everyone – personal implications may be perceived as intrusive, unsettling, or inaccurate.
In this article, I’ll help you understand the Facebook personal attributes policy and how you can fix your ad campaigns to avoid rejection in the future.
The personal attributes policy Facebook follows prohibits assertions or implications in advertisements concerning user identity and anything related to physical or mental health.
The Facebook personal attributes policy stops advertisers from making it too obvious the ads are targeting specific Facebook users. It may sound strange, but Facebook doesn’t want you to make it apparent to users that the ad copy, campaign, and landing page content are tailored to user profiles based on collected personal data.
Facebook wants users to believe advertisements are more random and coincidental than they actually are. You can avoid ad rejection, and a disabled ad account, and improve your compliance with Facebook ad policies if you follow my tips below.
Meta ads compliance team takes the Facebook ad policy concerning personal attributes very seriously and does not hesitate to reject ads they feel violate this policy.
Imagine scrolling through Facebook and seeing an ad that uses oddly specific information about your location, age, name, and the kind of things you enjoy. It is rather eerier and a little unsettling if you were discussing how you hate your dentist, and then an advertisement for “the best dentists near you” pops up.
Once upon a time, Facebook had specific and detailed targeting options available to advertisers. These targeted ads caused a backlash, as users felt violated and singled out by direct messaging tactics.
The personal attributes policy Facebook enforces applies to several possible aspects of identity. Below is a comprehensive list of what assumptions or implications to avoid, so you don’t have your ads rejected or issues with Facebook.
Complete List of Prohibited Personal Attributes:
A medical or genetic condition
Physical of mental health
Vulnerable financial status
Membership in a trade union
Any direct or indirect assertions, assumptions, or implications about the audience member violate the personal attributes policy. Below are a few examples of what NOT to do when wording your advertisements.
“Do you struggle with back pain?”
Implies medical condition
“Would you like to get rid of those wrinkles around your eyes?”
“Meet other Buddhists near you!”
“Do you need help getting hired with a criminal record?”
Implies criminal record
“Tired of being single? You can meet wonderful men near you!”
Implies family status and sexual orientation
“When you’re ready to move on, find the best divorce lawyer near you.”
Implies family status
The word “you” in and of itself is not prohibited, but you cannot use it to imply personal attributes. When you use the word “you”, the question or statement must apply to any Facebook user rather than a target demographic.
Try to avoid using “you”, as ads may be flagged by the AI review process. This is especially true if the ad and product are related to health, such as skin care products, sleep aids, or medications.
You can appeal, but if the ad is rejected again, it is more likely to worsen your account quality score. The more rejected appeals you get, the more often your account is going to get disabled, stifling your ability to advertise and grow your business or brand.
If you have a more seasoned account with an excellent quality score, you can try a slightly more direct approach, but it’s still a risk. When using the word “you”, keep the statements and questions general and the intended audience vague, for example:
“Taking care of your skin is hard, but…”
“Find the best restaurants near you!”
While these examples use the word “you”, they are broad enough that they could apply to anyone. But the ad may still get flagged and rejected by an automated system.
To prevent future rejections, I have a few strategies for you to try.
You can use the word “you”, but it’s usually easier to avoid such phrasing altogether. Instead, you can utilize first-person language to engage Facebook users. Below are some general examples of how to use first-person in your Facebook ad campaigns:
“How I overcame aging skin and wrinkles…”
“Before using X product my skin was tired and dull”
“My life changed when I started using X product”
Another alternative to the second person “you”, is the third person. You can use a story format or testimonial, speaking about another individual. You can use third-person pronouns, first names, or first and last names, for example:
“How John Carlton became a successful realtor with this online course…”
“She doesn’t have to worry about wrinkles anymore because…”
“Daisy never knew how easy her taxes could be until she tried X product.”
Write the ads more broadly and conceptually, relating what your audience wants to how your product can help them achieve that. For this strategy, try not to use pronouns or names, only discuss the product.
“Top five reasons why our collagen cream can help achieve youthful skin…”
“X product is packed with essential nutrients, such as x, y, z…”
“X product is versatile, fitting in a pocket, on a keyring, or inside a wallet!”
Ad campaign rejections are frustrating, so follow these tips and strategies to avoid unnecessary ad rejection, so your ad makes it in front of Facebook users and helps you expand your business or brand!
Walter Voronovic shares accurate, honest & pragmatic information on how to use the internet to build profitable digital business assets.
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