In a previous post, I wrote about landing page basics, including why everything about a Facebook Ad should be complimentary and cohesive to its corresponding landing page. That message was demonstrated by a great Facebook Ad and landing page example featuring the work of Zenfolio.

This post is one featuring some tough love. I have certainly seen worse examples of landing pages and Facebook Ads in my career, but this example from Once Wed (and Composition 101) popped up as I was preparing to write this two-part series. I felt it was an appropriate example that demonstrates how confusing a poorly-written ad and an unexpected landing page can lead to a poor user experience. It always stings a little when I see a site I genuinely like wasting money and creating a mixed-message user experience. So take this example for what it is – tough love.

Poor Landing Page Example: Once Wed…er…. Composition 101?

Once Wed Facebook AdThis ad from Once Wed is all over the place! The messaging is all over, the photo is not in line with Facebook Ad image recommendations, and a wealth of opportunities have been left behind.

First, the status update isn’t even a complete sentence. There is no compelling call to action, and they didn’t even use punctuation. Certainly not something you expect from a polished site like Once Wed.

The image is not cropped in a way that draws the viewer into it. Half of the guests are cut off so Once Wed could accommodate some text in the sky. My biggest recommendation would be to use a better photo and use the copy that is typed over the image as part of the status update or call to action. Also, what does “how to take better photos” have to do with “increase your Instagram following” – PLENTY, but they fail to make the connection in this ad, so the message is confusing.

The headline semi-matches the Instagram messaging, but again, it could have been better utilized (and we’ll get to that!) for better results. There is zero copy underneath the headline, a big missed opportunity. What about upping my game? What about my following? What is Once Wed advertising exactly? Why would their blog/site be the authority for Instagram marketing? Maybe the fact that they have 112,000 followers on Instagram, but they never mention that here. I need to know what they’re trying to compel me to do.

Finally, the Page advertising is Once Wed, but the URL the ad is pointing me to is Hmmm. Is this a fake ad? That doesn’t sound anything like Once Wed. The copy was about taking better pictures and Instagram, and the URL is about composition. Again, the messaging could not be more all over the place.

Making matters worse, when you click on the ad and make your way to the landing page, you land on the Once Wed Landing Page for Composition 101Composition site, it takes awhile before you can see the connection between the Once Wed Facebook Page advertising something. The URL says that they made this as a special Facebook landing page. So they took the time to actually create a landing page, but then they didn’t create a landing page that at all corresponded with their ad. 

The Once Wed logo is not in the header. The hero image (a/k/a the large primary image of a site or campaign), tells us that we’ve landed on a page that is a digital course in visual composition and design, and that Joy Thigpen is involved. Joy Thigpen is an AMAZING creative director and stylist and she wasn’t even HINTED at in the Facebook ad! What a lost opportunity; wedding photographers especially know who she is. Certainly wedding photographers who are fans of Once Wed know who Joy Thigpen is.

When you scroll through the landing page, Instagram is only mentioned FOUR times, and not until you get all the way down to the testimonials, and the rest are in the FAQ. They used “Instagram” twice in the ad, but only four times way, way, way down on the page. Again, completely mixed messages, and many opportunities lost.

Re-Writing the Composition 101 + Once Wed Ad

I take the poor example from Once Wed and Composition 101, with the lessons learned in exploring the good example of a landing page experience from Zenfolio to create a better Composition 101 ad. I write about this in my Facebook Ads posts, but it’s worth reiterating:

For every Facebook audience, write at least three ads. Use three different images, three different headlines and types of copy. Run them all, and after 24 hours, shut off the two ads that are not performing. This is how you confirm what copy and images help that target audience connect with you.

Once Wed Revamped AdHere is another shot of the not-so-great Facebook Ad, and I’ve marked the corresponding areas so you can see what changes I recommend.

Section A: The first part is this status update. Here are a couple of options they could have tested:

  • Up your Instagram game with a new course from Once Wed and Joy Thigpen!
  • Learn how to grow your Instagram following with Once Wed and wedding expert Joy Thigpen!
  • Once Wed and Joy Thigpen can help you grow your Instagram following and up your game!
  • Learn amazing composition techniques from Once Wed and wedding style expert Joy Thigpen!

This is an example of what I would try for three different types of copy. Honestly, my favorite is the last, if only because Instagram is mentioned so little on the actual landing page.

Section B: The Headline. You only have a handful of characters to use in the headline (vary by ad type and objective), so you need to be succinct and direct. Here you can try a couple of things. You could write the status copy to be more about the course and then do a headline such as:

Once Wed + Joy Thigpen

This would communicate who the players are, and that alone would give it enough “familiarity” for a pro photographer to see why they should trust the source. Other options would be to write out one benefit:

  • 300-Page In-depth Course
  • Killer Composition Tips

Section C: This is an area that is referred to as the link description. It should tell a little bit more about what the user can expect when they click-through to the landing page. It should give a little more detail, and it’s your last chance to entice the reader into clicking over to your site.

  • Learn the composition secrets that helped us grow to over 100k Instagram followers!
  • Over 300 pages of in-depth instruction to help you up your Instagram game and attract new clients!
  • Join us for this EXCLUSIVE course on composition from Once Wed and wedding expert Joy Thigpen.

I could go on and on, but as you can see, anything descriptive is better than the area left blank. It’s valuable real estate and it should be used.

Hopefully you have pieced together the basics of a positive user experience with Facebook Ads and landing pages. These are the small details that add up to big impact in marketing your photography business. Making the time to get it right means saving time, money, and effort in the long run.


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