It’s extremely frustrating when your campaigns don’t work out.

And because it could be due to a wide variety of reasons, it can be difficult for inexperienced (or even experienced marketers) to diagnose the exact reason why the campaign might not be working.

To help you out, we created a quick checklist you can use to diagnose most (if not all) the possible problems you might experience when you’re running your campaigns.

How Can You Use This?

  • You can use this blueprint to get a clear idea of why your campaigns are losing money or not getting the ROI you want.
  • You’ll know what you need to do next to improve your campaigns.

Tools And Resources

We included a PDF copy of the checklist you can use to review your current campaigns.

As you go through the blueprint, use this checklist as a reference.

You can download a PDF version of the blueprint and the resources here.

How To Use This Checklist?

I recommend you go through the whole blueprint and the PDF checklist) at least once to understand the types of problems you might experience.

I categorized the problems into 4 main areas:

  • Market
  • Offer
  • Copy
  • Traffic

Read through the different problems to understand what they are and how you can fix them.

For each area, I included a few ways you can tell that this is the area you need to focus on.

These are ‘symptoms’ that will give clues about where the problem lies.

Here’s a short summary of the ‘symptoms’:


You know you have a market problem when you tested various angles for the same audience but the overall CTR (%) is still low.


Assuming you identified the right audience and your targeting is accurate, the next likely reason why your campaign is failing is because you don’t have an offer that is significantly better than your competitors.


There are 2 types of copy you need to take note of – the ad copy and the landing page copy.

If your CTR (%) is generally low, you know you have a problem with the ad copy.

If your conversion rate (%) on your landing page is low, you’ll have to work on the landing page.


There are various traffic sources in the market but the problems you’ll face in most (if not all) the traffic sources are pretty similar. Here are common problems we’ll tackle in this blueprint:

  • Low engagement
  • Low reach
  • High cost
  • Low Return On Advertising Spend (ROAS)
  • Compliance

I included questions inside you can use to narrow down on the critical things you need to tweak.

For example, if I’m diagnosing a problem in the ad below.

Korean Shirts Diagnosing Facebook Ad Example

(Credit: Korean Shirts)

I’ll look at my ad and ask myself the following questions in the “Ad Copy” section of the checklist.

Facebook Ad Copy Checklist

As I go through the list, I realized that the ad doesn’t have an attention grabbing image.

In fact, the image might be a little too dark and dull for the market I’m going after.

In this case, I might want to do a split test and and see if I can get an improved result with a new ad image.


There is really no such thing as a “sure-fire” solution to all your campaigns problems.

Any one who promises you that is probably lying or don’t know what they’re talking about.

In the end, it’s all about testing, testing, testing!


You know you have a market problem when you tested various angles for the same audience but CTR (%) is still low.

Look at the market you’re currently going after and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Are you targeting the right market?
  • Do you know your market’s current level of awareness?
  • Have you created an ideal customer avatar for your advertising?
  • Did you identify the correct demographics for your market?
  • Were you able to list at least 20 brands they are following in the market?
  • Are you clear about the types of hobbies they might have?
  • Were you able to elicit their values and prioritize them?
  • Have you written down a story of their day to day environment – what they will see, hear, feel, touch and/or taste on a daily basis?  
  • Did you identify the types of behaviours they exhibit in relation to your products or services?
  • Have you written down all the possible objections they might have when it comes to buying your product or service?  
  • Have you identified the market’s actual pains and pleasure?
  • Have you verified that you are using the right pain or pleasure in your marketing message? If not, do you have any way to verify this?

One of the best ways to make sure you have the right market in place is to create an ideal customer avatar like this one:

Ideal Customer Avatar Example

You can find out how to create a similar ideal customer avatar in the blueprint below:



Assuming you identified the right audience and your targeting is accurate, the next likely reason why your campaign is failing is because you don’t have an offer that is significantly better than your competitors.

Go through your current product page or sales-letter and ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is your offer easy to understand by your target market?
  • Is your offer different from the competition in at least one specific way?
  • Does the value outweigh the cost of the product or service? Have you identified at least 3 “must-have” benefits of your product or service?  
  • Are the benefits of your offer clear, concise and memorable?
  • Are the benefits of your offer supported by proof?
    • Do you have a strong demonstration that proves without a doubt that you can deliver your benefits?
    • Do you have testimonials by people who are similar to your target market?
    • Do you have endorsements from an organization or person that is respected by your target market?
    • Do you have statistics or data that backs up your claims and promises?
  • Have you included risk reversals to mitigate or minimise your market’s biggest risks when it comes to buying from you?
  • Is there enough internal or external urgency for your market to take action immediately?
  • Are there rational reasons given for discounts, premiums and other offer elements?

If you’re interested to learn more about creating irresistible offer, you can check out our blueprint on this topic:


Ad Copy

There are times where you have a great offer but you were not able to present your offer in a clear and compelling way to your target audience.

If the CTR(%) of your ad is low, it usually means your ad copy is not engaging enough for your target audience.

Note: There are different traffic sources with different types of copies. We tried our best to create a checklist that covers as many types of traffic sources as possible in the checklist.

  • Does the ad have one core message?
  • Is the ad congruent to the landing page?
  • Does the ad have an attention grabbing image and/or headline?
  • Does the first paragraph of the ad give your target market a reason to continue reading the rest of the ad?
  • Does the rest of the ad build desire for the target market to act?
  • Is the biggest benefit and/or promise of your offer clearly communicated?
  • Does the ad have a specific and clear call-to-action that tells the target market exactly what they need to do next?
  • Does your ad create urgency for your target market to take action?

If you like to learn more about writing high converting ad copies, you can check out this blueprint:


Landing Page Copy

If your CTR(%) is generally healthy but the conversion rate on your landing page is low, it usually means there are problems with your landing page copy.

Do keep in mind that it is entirely possible that you might be targeting the wrong audience in the first place. This is why it’s extremely important for you to make sure you picked the right target market for your product or service.

This section assumes that you are using a full sales-letter for your landing page, like the one below:

Landing Page Example

If you are using a lead capture page or even an e-commerce product page for your landing page, you might not use all the elements that I talked about below.

If you like to find out more about creating a high converting landing page, you can check out our blueprint on this topic:


  • Does it address a specific audience?
  • Did you describe their biggest pain?
  • Did you illustrate their biggest pleasure?
  • Does it support the headline?
  • Does the headline directly identify and address your audience?
  • Does it “force” your prospect to pay attention?
  • Does it include a strong promise?
  • Does it include an element of curiosity?
  • Is the headline clear?
  • Does your headline compel the reader to read the rest of the copy?
  • Is the headline believable?
  • Does your sub-headline and first paragraph give the audience a compelling reason to continue reading the rest of the copy?
  • Is your first paragraph simple and incredibly easy to read?
  • Does the first paragraph continue the same message and/or emotion that is set up in the headline and subheadline?
  • Does the first paragraph intensify and expand on the the message and emotion from the headline and subheadline?  
  • Does the audience know that they will be receiving more value from reading the rest of the copy?
  • Did you answer the question,“Why should I listen to you?”
  • Did you prove that you’re the best person to solve their problems?
  • Were you able to support your credibility with testimonials, endorsements and/or other types of proof?
  • Did you accurately describe the problems and challenges they might be facing at this point of time with vivid detail?
  • Did you make your audience aware of the suffering they are going through at the moment?
  • Are you able to dramatize your audience’s current worries and anxieties with regards to the problems you’re trying to solve?
  • Did you make your audience feel slightly emotional and uncomfortable about their current state?
  • Are the consequences you described believable?
  • Did you accurately describe their inner most desires?
  • Did you remind your audience of their wants?
  • Are you able to dramatize your audience’s aspirations and fantasies?
  • Does it increase desire for your unique solution?
  • Do you present a unique solution that is significantly different from your competitors?
  • Did you share how and why your solution is different from your competitors?
  • Do you show how the unique solution is able to help them solve their biggest pains?
  • Do you demonstrate or at least explain why your solution is easy to implement?
  • Are the practical / functional benefits of the product/premiums fully described?
  • Are the positive emotional benefits of the product/premiums fully described?
  • Are the experiential benefits of the product/premiums fully described?
  • Do your bullets have a one-two punch structure – share one benefit and add on with another bigger or better benefit ?
  • Did you paint pleasing pictures in your prospect’s mind with your bullets?
  • Were you able to effectively use intensifier to increase the desire for your offer?
  • Do you give away some concrete useable information to increase the value of your secret?
  • Is the value of your bonuses more than the value of your main offer?
  • Did you explain why the bonuses will help them achieve the outcome they want from your offer faster and easier?
  • Does the bonuses address potential objections of your main offer?
  • Did you quantify the real value of the main offer and bonuses?
  • Do you share how the real value is low versus the amount of value they can get from the main offer and bonuses?
  • Is the special price significantly lower than the real value you are offering?
  • Does your guarantee reduce or mitigate their biggest risks?
  • Is your guarantee bold enough? Are there competitors that give the same guarantee?
  • Did you give your guarantee an interesting sounding name?
  • Is there a strong and compelling reason to act now?
  • Did you include external urgency and/or scarcity e.g. limited time bonuses, limited slots?
  • Did you include internal urgency by making your prospect aware of the consequences of not taking action?
  • Are your audience of the pain they are experiencing without your solution?
  • Were you able to list down the possible consequences of delayed action on the audience’s part?
  • Did you remind your audience of the pleasure they will get immediately after purchasing your product or service?
  • Does the page only have one clear and direct CTA?
  • IS the CTA easy to locate and visible at multiple points in the sales copy (only a scroll away)
  • Does the CTA include a strong promise?
  • Do you tell people exactly what they are going to get when they buy?
  • Do you tell people to buy now just above the order button?

Traffic Source

Traffic source problems are the easiest to spot.

I listed down a list of the common problems you might face in most (if not all) major paid traffic sources.

You can look through the list and pick the problem you are facing. In the checklist, you’ll find out how to solve those specific traffic problems.

  • Are you targeting the right audience?
  • Does your current ad message match the audience?
  • Can you create more curiosity in your ad message?
  • Have you tested different angles for the same targeting?
  • Have you split test different images or headlines? They usually give you the highest improvement in your results?
  • Can you breakdown your audience even further to see if you can get better results? Targeting individual states or different age groups for example might give you better engagement and overall results.
  • Have you ran the same ads or ad message multiple times to the audience? If yes, you might want to create new variations of the same ad message.
  • Do you put aside enough budget?
  • Are you bidding high enough? Usually bidding above the recommended bid at the start gives you more reach and data.
  • Is your targeting too narrow?
  • Does it matter? Usually, higher quality traffic costs more. As long as you’re still making a decent overall profit, lowering cost might not be your first priority.  
  • Are you bidding too high?
  • Are there other audiences (interests, placement and/or keywords) that will give you a lower CPM?
  • Can you target a broader or wider audience? This usually gives you a lower overall CPM.
  • Is there a special event happening in the market? It could be a special occasion or event that changes the market’s behaviour.
  • Can you increase your Average Order Value (AOV) by adding more upsells and cross-sells?
  • Can you improve the conversion rate of every stage in your funnel?
  • Can you lower your overall traffic cost? (see tips on High Cost)
  • Can you test other platforms or traffic sources? Even if you’re using the same type of traffic source e.g. search, you might get higher quality traffic at a lower cost.
  • Did you put your contact information on your landing page?
  • Does the landing page and ad copy accurately reflect the type of business you are in?
  • Are the claims believable?
  • Are the claims backed by proof and/or authority?
  • Are there legal disclaimers for the claims?
  • Is there a privacy policy that provides comprehensive information about the collection and use of the personal data?
  • Is the landing page and ad copy compliant with the legal requirements of  the industry or governing body?
  • Is the ad copy congruent to the landing page?
  • Is the tone of the landing page and ad copy generally positive?
  • Do you use excessive fear, greed or hate to persuade your audience?

What’s Next?

This blueprint help business owners and marketers to find out why their campaigns are not working.

We included links to other blueprints you can reference if you like to learn the best practices for launching your campaigns.

If you need any further help, do check out our FB group where you can ask questions about what is covered in the blueprint: