Dear Facebook Ads, Customer Support Sucks

Dear Facebook Ads,
Thank you for the amazing new Ad Platform. It’s groundbreaking,  heart-pounding, a lot like Google’s Content Network and with even more intriguing targeting options on the grid.  It’s been a love affair for AIMCLEAR, starting in the academic lead generation sector years ago when ‘Ads first launched. I’m sorry to say that Facebook’s inability to grow customer service at the same prodigal rate is extremely disappointing.


I first started evangelizing Facebook PPC at SearchEngineStrategies New York 2008 in a presentation entitled “The Impending Social PPC Revolution,” written about the platform passionately in SearchEngineLand, SearchEngineWatch, AIMCLEAR Blog and sold it to some of the coolest brands in the world.

Maybe Facebook should put some of the money being spent on rotating musical UIs (user interface) and put it into a business structure that includes regard for those who will pay their salaries when the VC cash is strategically expended.

For now Facebook’s lack of savvy is making us look stupid with clients…stupid for buying your product and attitude.

Mark Zuckerberg seems like a cool kid. Too bad the FB organization hasn’t a freakin’ CLUE as to how to treat grownup customers who spend tens & hundreds of thousands…and millions. What I have to say to you is that I’m like one of your best salespeople, you’re team is screwing up, appears to not care and your company needs to grow up.

The QOS Difference: “Free” Users Vs. Paid Customers
Sure Facebook has no obligation to provide quality of service or any type of support whatsoever, to the poor sweaty masses who are using free tools. Too bad for users as they get a cool tool in exchange for giving Facebook free content. There’s not even a phone number on the Facebook site.

facebookAds2A search for corporate yields a CA phone number with 3 options: 1) too bad (in a pretty voice), no phone support, use the web forms  2) “if you know your party’s extension please dial it now” 3) offers and  operator number where a message machine (with no outgoing message) lets Facebook users cast a futile message to a company that obviously doesn’t care or is incapable of doing so.  The trouble is that paying customers get the same weak-ass treatment.

Next year in my personal FB account, our clients will spend about a half million bucks. Got that, my PERSONAL account.  It can take 24-36 hours to get a response from the web support form.  But here’s what really pissed me off: We have a new client, one of the best known and respected brands in America.

Trust me you know the name, a perfect match for Facebook Ads. This client hired us to test a grid of Ads, advised by their AdWords conversion history. It makes a lot of sense to figure out where their demo lines up with FB.  Because it’s not reasonable for this client to give us access to the live Facebook account, we created a new FB account to run the ads from, registered in the name of our client’s marketing director.

Stupid Facebook Ads Fact #1 : Best we can figure, the only way run FB ads outside your personal account in this situation, is to violate Facebook’s TOS and open a second account in our Marketing Director’s name: “Advertisers cannot create or manage multiple Facebook accounts for advertising purposes unless given permission by Facebook to do so.”

Umm right. Just try and freakin’ contact Facebook for permission to spend say, 10K in a month. They don’t return your emails and there IS no phone number. Facebook tracks who logs in from what IP address and with which cookies.  There is no client center concept and no support. The TOS is Pollyanna as hell. Please fix it Mark.

So when we created this second account in our brand’s Marketing Director’s account, Facebook imposed a $50.00 a day cap ($1500 per month). Ummm, we have like 5-10K every month to test Facebook Ads segments and FB did not returned multiple email communications from multiple accounts (including my personal where I spend client’s money) for 36 hours!


What are we supposed to tell our client Facebook? Maybe we should try “gee facebook doesn’t trust us” or perhaps “I know you’re brand is famous but FB doesn’t want your media spend.” One thought would be to say “let’s take the cash to BING instead.”

Look, we are your greatest fans. We’ve supported Facebook Ads even when our SEM friends told us the traffic was empty and didn’t convert. We looked the other way in ’07, when your team rejected our made-millions-in-adwords ads with a stern “stop abusing Facebook users, ” instead of being civilized.  How about if now you assign us a dedicated customer support manager or something. I will say that months ago we were contacted by a FB rep’, who did not return our emails about a month after.  Woot dude.


photo credit: Andrew Feinberg

FYI, we don’t ask anyone “permission” to spend money on their product. The appropriate approach is for Facebook to thank us for our business.  I know you’re a rock star Mark and I’m just some schlep-marketer, but I’d be happy to meet with you anywhere in America to discuss this matter.  I’ve got a few suggestions regarding the how to handle customers like AIMCLEAR. Say anything you want about Google AdWords, but they are a reliable partner when my company’s reputation is on the line. </rant>

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