Facebook advertising restrictions

Facebook advertising restrictions for healthcare sectors

Facebook's advertising rules are very strict when it comes to promoting health and beauty services. Here's what's prohibited or requires caution

Avatar Ilya Nikitenko
6 min reading
  1. Advertising Drugs and Medical Procedures:
    • Facebook prohibits the advertising of prescription drugs.
    • Advertising medical procedures and surgeries is permitted, but must be presented cautiously, without promises of guaranteed results or before-and-after images that create unrealistic expectations.
  2. Health Improvement Claims:
    • Statements that could be perceived as promises of cure or health improvement are not allowed. For example, you cannot claim that any procedure can guarantee to cure diseases or stop the aging process. Nor can you promise weight loss.
  3. Target Audience:
    • Facebook has restrictions on targeting advertising by medical criteria. For example, you cannot target an audience based on medical conditions, age, gender, or other sensitive characteristics if it could be perceived as discrimination.
  4. Images in Advertising:
    • Avoid using images that may cause discomfort or shock to the audience. For instance, it is prohibited to use photographs of open wounds, drastic before-and-after changes due to medical interventions, or anything that can provoke negative emotions.

Here are the 4 main types of prohibited images. Attention! Facebook can differentiate such frames in videos too!

  1. Before-and-after Images: Photos demonstrating the results of medical procedures or cosmetic surgeries before and after are often banned as they can create unrealistic expectations and be misleading.
  2. Shocking Content: Images showing open wounds, excessive bleeding, or other shocking medical scenes are banned as they can cause discomfort or negative emotions in viewers.
  3. Sexualized Content: Photos implying indecent postures or an unacceptable degree of nudity are also prohibited, especially in the context of medical and cosmetic services.
  4. Use of Sensitive Personal Data: Images that can appear as an invasion of privacy or confidentiality (e.g., patients in medical institutions without their consent) are strictly prohibited.
  5. Confidentiality and Sensitivity:
    • Advertising materials should not instill a sense of anxiety or fear, nor use sensitive personal data without user consent.
  6. Advertising Dietary Supplements and Cosmetics:
    • Advertising dietary supplements and cosmetics is permissible, but it must clearly comply with labeling and safety regulations, and should not contain misleading or unfounded claims about the product’s benefits.

What happens if the rules are broken?

If you regularly violate Facebook’s advertising rules, it can have serious consequences for your account and ability to run ad campaigns. Here’s what can happen:

  1. Ad Blocking: The most common consequence of rule violation is the rejection of specific ads. Facebook automatically checks ads for compliance with its advertising policies, and if something doesn’t match, the ad will be rejected.
  2. Warnings: After the first few violations, Facebook may send warnings. This signals that you need to review and modify the content of your advertising materials.
  3. Account Limitations: With multiple violations, Facebook may restrict your ad account, such as reducing the visibility of your ads or reducing the audience you can target.
  4. Ad Account Suspension: In cases of serious or repeated violations, Facebook can completely suspend your ad account, which means you will no longer be able to post any ads.
  5. User Suspension: In extreme cases, if the violations are considered serious enough, Facebook can suspend not only your ad account but also your personal profile.
  6. Legal Consequences: In some cases, especially if the ad violates laws or regulations (for example, on the sale of medical or pharmaceutical goods), legal consequences may follow from regulatory authorities.

What to do if your ad is rejected?

  1. Understand the Reason for the Rejection: Facebook should provide a reason why your ad was rejected. This could be related to a policy violation, use of images or text that does not comply with the platform’s rules. Review the rejection notification to understand what exactly caused the problem.
  2. Make Necessary Changes: Once you identify the reason for the rejection, you will need to adjust the ad text, images, or targeting parameters to comply with Facebook’s policy. Ensure your ad does not contain any prohibited elements and complies with all platform requirements.
  3. Resubmit the Ad for Review: After making changes, you can submit the ad for re-review. This is usually done automatically after changing and saving the ad.
  4. Contact Support: If you are unsure about the reasons for rejection or how to fix the ad, or if the ad is rejected again after making changes, you can contact Facebook’s support. They can provide more detailed explanations and help solve your problem.

What to do if your account is suspended due to frequent ad rejections?

If your Facebook ad account has been suspended due to frequent ad rejections, you will need to take a few steps for possible account recovery:

  1. Analyze the Reasons for the Blocks: First of all, it’s important to understand why your ads regularly violated Facebook’s rules. Check all previous violation and block notifications to identify common issues or mistakes that could have led to the block.
  2. Contact Facebook Support: You can contact Facebook support via the Help Center. Prepare a detailed explanation of the situation and an action plan to address the violations. When describing the problem, be specific and provide all the necessary data for your case to be considered.
  3. Submit an Appeal: If your account has been suspended, you usually have an opportunity to appeal. Clearly state your arguments in the appeal form as to why the account should be restored, and what steps you’ve taken to rectify the problem.
  4. Review Advertising Strategy: After unblocking the account, it’s important to review your advertising strategy and content management policies to avoid repeating the mistakes. Make sure all your ads fully comply with Facebook’s policies.
  5. Training and Hiring Professionals: Consider taking specialized Facebook advertising courses or hiring professional marketers who are familiar with the platform’s policies and requirements.
  6. Regularly Update Knowledge: Facebook’s policies can change, so it’s important to regularly update your knowledge and keep track of the latest changes in the platform’s rules.

Remember, the account recovery process can take some time, and a positive outcome is not always guaranteed.

Follow the rules and remember that it’s better to turn to an agency that works in your niche and knows the rules well, as it has already gone through all the blocks. This won’t give you a 100% guarantee against blocks, but it will certainly make life much easier, save a lot of time on communication with tech support. And of course, it will reduce the likelihood of downtime while your ad account is blocked. And by the way, creating a new ad cabinet when you have a blocked one is not possible. This means you need to create a new Business Manager. And that’s another headache.