How a Scarily Long Facebook Ad Saved a Dying EComm Product from Facebook Obscurity

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No one reads long Facebook ad copy, right? At least that’s what you’d believe if you listened to most Facebook advertisers. And at the risk of pointing fingers…

EComm business owners are the worst for clinging onto short Facebook ad copy. Even when they have zero evidence to suggest it works best.

I have no idea why so many advertisers are afraid of long copy. But what I do know is this – they’re WRONG about short ad copy and I’m about to prove it to you. 

Join me as I walk you through a hugely successful Facebook Ad that broke every EComm copy rule – and increased cold traffic sales conversions by over 500%.

First, a little background information…

Who was the client? A little-known men’s premium fashion accessories brand

What was the challenge? With almost no brand recognition, the client faced an uphill struggle to generate sales from cold traffic. Their products are high quality, but there’s little differentiation between their sunglasses and hundreds of other sunglasses brands.

The market is saturated…competitive…and attracts label-conscious buyers. 

No wonder the client was struggling to hit their Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) target – and needed to revamp their Facebook ads to make more sales! 

How was their old copy? Like most EComm businesses this client stuck with typical benefit-driven short copy like this…

It wasn’t performing well. 

Which is why I took a completely different approach, which sky-rocketed the client’s sales conversions (much to their surprise).

Here’s how their new ad looks:

facebook ad size
facebook ad size

Notice anything about this ad copy? That’s right – it’s chuffin’ long! And yet, a cold audience read enough of it to buy 500% more pairs of sunglasses than the next best-performing ad.

Now, I have to admit – I was on tenterhooks when we first launched this facebook ad. While I believed in my idea, I had to fight hard to get the client on board. 

That’s because they’d never seen such long-form ad copy for a physical product. They were reluctant to run this copy. So, I needed it to work if I wanted to save face!

Luckily, my conviction paid off. And all signs indicate that this ad copy will be a “Unicorn”. In other words, it has the potential to generate sales for months and months to come.

What makes this ad a “Unicorn Ad”?

Now that you’ve seen the full ad copy, I’m going to break it down in stages so you understand the thinking behind it – and why it’s working so well.

Let’s get started! 

When writing a Facebook Ad there’s one element that’s often overlooked. It’s the product’s positioning or USP.  Positioning is particularly important in competitive markets. It’s also extremely difficult in the fashion niche. Why?

Because fashion items rarely differ that much from one another. It’s why many fashion companies invest heavily in building a “brand”. Their brand becomes the differentiator instead of the product. 

And that’s where things got tricky for our client:

  • The no.1 buying objection I uncovered in my research was this…

‘I’ve never heard of this brand – why would I trust sunglasses instead of old favourites like RayBan or Oakley”

  • Their product was relatively high-priced with no brand to justify the price tag
  • There were almost no obvious physical differences between these glasses and any other sunglasses on the market 

Eep! No wonder they struggled to sell these bad boys to cold traffic! There was only one thing for it. I needed to create a compelling narrative to explain why these no-name sunglasses were more valuable than a pair of $200 designer sunglasses.

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How I overcame the major market objection to

sell these premium sunglasses

It all started with research. Here’s what I discovered about the target market: 

  • They’re fed up of paying ever-increasing prices for designer sunglasses 
  • They perceive the quality of designer sunglasses to be worse than it was a few years ago
  • They’re very brand and style conscious (<< this created the biggest challenge!) 
  • They’re more motivated by status than price – but they still want good value 
  •  

As you can see from the bullet points there’s a big fat problem I needed to overcome. How do I sell expensive sunglasses…by a brand no-one’s heard of…to cold traffic…to a brand-conscious market…at a time when re-targeting doesn’t work? 

Challenging? Yes. Impossible? No! 

That’s because the client had a tiny snifter of a USP buried deep in the back pages of their website. And that USP was perfect to answer the “I’ve never heard of this brand” objection, which was hurting the client’s sales.

Trouble is, the USP was super boring

It was to do with supply chains and manufacturing processes. So while it helped explain why these sunglasses really are better quality than most designer sunglasses – nobody wants to stick around and read about supply chains when they’re buying a fashion accessory!

I needed to make a boring USP

sound exciting!

So how do you transform a stodgy USP into a super sexy selling point that gets cold traffic excited enough to buy? 

I needed a story. But what story? 

Going back to my research I discovered something interesting about the sunglasses market. It got me spitting blood, so I was certain it could do the same for my target audience.

You see, over two-thirds of all major sunglasses brands are actually produced and sold by one single corporation called Luxxotica. In recent years they’ve generated a ton of mainstream press coverage for the unethical way they’ve created a virtual monopoly in the eyewear market.

This allows them to ramp up prices…swallow up smaller brands…and dominate the market with sub-standard products.

Now, of course I had to be careful not to name names. I didn’t want a lawsuit on my hands. Which is why I never name Luxxotica. I simply refer to them as “most major eyewear brands” or “big brand bullies”. 

What was great about this story is that it allowed me to position the client as the consumer’s hero in a fight against corporate greed.

The sunglasses are no longer just a stylish fashion accessory. They’re a rebellion against Corporate America. AND the fact that they have no brand is no longer a negative. It’s a positive. Because branded glasses suck.

Why a good story was not enough to

sell these premium sunglasses

As you can see from the ad copy, it’s pretty hypey. That can be a downer if you handle it badly. 

Which is why I took steps to immediately squash my avatar’s BS alert, so they’d believe my story and feel motivated to buy. Here’s how I did it…

  1. I named the founder of the company
  2. I explained how much time he spent on the ground in China, observing first-hand the practices of other fashion brands   
  3. I gave credibility to the story by mentioning some of the mainstream media outlets which have featured articles about Luxxotica’s unethical practices 

These points all serve a purpose. And that’s to give weight to my claims before doubt creeps into the buyer’s mind.

Let’s move on to the next section of the sunglasses ad…

I’ve told my sales story.

Now what?

After laying the foundations of my sales argument with a dramatic story, it’s time to bring the sale home. How did I do it? 

Well, the first section of the ad was all about shifting my prospect’s belief about the value of designer sunglasses. Now that I’ve triggered anger and frustration I need to transform these negative emotions into a feeling of desire for THIS PRODUCT ONLY.

I want to make these sunglasses the only logical solution to the problem I’ve just described in the first half of the ad.  Here’s how:

 

  • Allude to the boring USP – notice how I’m upfront that I don’t want to bore them with the details. This is true, but it also helps build rapport and justify why I’m not explaining the manufacturing process in depth.     

I know no one really wants to know about supply chains. But I also know I’m leaving an information gap that could hurt the sale. So I raise the issue head on, and summarise the big benefit as briefly as possible.

 

  • Smash the “I’ve never heard of this brand” objection again – I know the lack of brand recognition is a HUGE problem for this product. Which is why I’ve gone after the objection again by turning it into a positive.

I explain that there’s a reason you’ve never heard of the brand. It’s intentional. Because we don’t want to waste your money on celebrity endorsements. Instead, the client spends all their money on producing better quality products.


  • List only the most relevant product features – It’s tempting to include every product feature when you write sales copy. I don’t blame you. It’s actually harder to decide what to LEAVE OUT…than to say everything about your product.

Trouble is, listing every feature can be distracting. If you have a solid sales argument, you must list only the features that back up your argument.

Leave out everything else!

 

  • Solid risk-reversal – Another major problem for the client is that most people want to try on sunglasses before they buy. It means they’re nervous about buying sunglasses over the internet.

So, I included the “Always On” guarantee to remove any risk from the buyer 

 

  • Yes copy – I close off the ad with a line designed to get a “Yes!” from the prospect. 

“Can’t say fairer than that, right?” 

This re-emphasises the main message of the ad. This is a company who is all about fairness. Not ripping off customers or killing the competition to make massive profits.

 

So, there you have it.

The client’s happy. I’m relieved. And now you can take a similar approach to your ads – and make more sales to cold traffic…even if you think no one reads long ad copy! 

Here’s a quick re-cap of the thinking that went into this ad: 

  • I needed a compelling narrative to sell a high-price, undifferentiated product…with no brand recognition…to cold traffic…in a competitive market
  • The main objections were “I’ve never heard of you before”…“I’m nervous about buying sunglasses online…and “is this BS?”. I tackled them head on to eliminate doubt.
  • The USP was extremely important to justify to premium price tag. It was also too boring to explain in an ad. I kept it brief while taking care to back up my sales argument. 
  • I listed only the product features that tied into my sales argument. I don’t mention anything else because they’re irrelevant to my sales story.
  •  I included the guarantee to remove any risk from the buyer who was nervous to buy sunglasses online 

Want the secret to cranking out profitable Facebook Ad Copy in minutes

…even if you’ve never written a Facebook ad before?

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