Brewer Direct

“I had no idea… why our Facebook ads are being disapproved!”

This tip helps you navigate the choppy waters of Facebook’s new ad guidelines

“I had no idea… why our Facebook ads are being disapproved!”


In recent months, some Missions have been frustrated to find their ads on Facebook being disapproved. What could be so harmful about asking your Facebook followers to give money to help the homeless?

Often, it’s not the ask… but triggering words in the ad causing it to fall under what Facebook calls “issues of national importance” that make it get flagged.

With its new ad guidelines, Facebook aims to increase election transparency and integrity on its platform. But the rules can spell trouble for nonprofits who use Facebook ads to raise money to address issues like homelessness and hunger. Facebook often disapproves ads like these without further authorization because of their emphasis on “poverty,” which Facebook considers an “issue of national importance.”

Tip of the month: Make sure you know the new Facebook guidelines and follow our 3 easy steps below to improve your chances of getting your ads approved.

1. Designate one or two point people to post for your organization and get them authorized. They will need to be Page admins on your Facebook Page, and the authorization process requires verifying their identity. More info on how to do that is available on Facebook’s Business page.

2. Realize that ad authorization for “issues of national importance” involves not only the ad, but its landing page too (where the ad links). So make sure your phrasing in both places complies with Facebook’s guidelines.
Be careful! Some have found that words like “homeless” and “hungry” can be “trigger” words that send ads to the Ad Archive for “issues of national importance,” where they’ll sit until the advertiser either completes the authorization process or changes the wording so “issue of national importance” no longer applies.
Ask yourself if your ad would still be effective without those terms. Would “hurting person” be an appropriate synonym for “homeless person”? Don’t sacrifice the strength of your call to action, but consider which ads (and their landing pages) might work just as well with a little wordsmithing. You’ll expedite their posting and avoid the authorization process that can take time as it goes through both AI (artificial intelligence) and human levels of review.  

3. If your ad does get denied, don’t give up! You can request a review, and often, your ad will eventually be authorized to run, but will simply contain a disclaimer about who paid for the ad.
Remember, your Facebook followers are following you because they care about your organization and the meaningful work you do. Stick to these new guidelines, but don’t let them make you fearful… your followers are eager to hear your message, and with the right words, they will still hear you, loud and clear!


Want more? For this month’s “Need to Read” on how Brewer Direct’s new Explorer Program empowers small missions to grow click here.

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