by Carissa Siddell

June 27, 2022

Spilling your coffee, forgetting where you placed your keys, and finding a rejection email for a digital ad campaign in your inbox are among the worst ways to start the day as a marketer.

After a digital ad campaign was rejected by TikTok recently for not following the platform’s creative policies. I reached out to our account representative by email and set up a meeting to discuss a strategy to get our ads up and running. Unlike many other social platforms, TikTok has incredible support, and you actually get to talk with a person and put a face to the name, which is beneficial in expediting the process.

Our representative submitted the rejected creative to two teams at TikTok to get feedback on how we could improve our creative to be compliant with their rules. Our representative kept us updated with daily correspondence, so we remained in the loop, which is a level of support I’ve never experienced in my years managing social campaigns for clients. It took TikTok support about three days to come back to us with what the actual problems were and provided suggestions for how we could correct all the issues that were causing the creative to be flagged by its creative policies. Our creative ended up getting flagged during the review process for restricted content.

Before you reach out to TikTok for support, try the three steps our account rep offered that can help you determine why your ad got rejected:

  • Check for any text or creative issues. Make sure your creative has the standard dimensions needed to run (9:16,16:9 or 1:1 are the standard ratios). Additionally, check for any spelling or grammatical errors that might cause your content to be flagged.
  • Make sure your content isn’t considered restricted. Even if your content is positive in context, your ads can still be rejected if they are considered restricted. Using certain controversial or inflammatory words can cause your creative to be subject to scrutiny even if they are used in a professional context. For example, posting a support meeting ad for people who have experienced some sort of trauma like sexual assault, rape or domestic violence might cause your post to be subject to review.
  • Check if your ad is consistent. If your ad contains a link, make sure it takes the user to the advertised product or service in the creative and caption.

If you’re running ad campaigns on TikTok and meet the spending threshold to be assigned an account rep, I would highly suggest messaging them and setting up a meeting to establish rapport before you have an issue on the platform. Forming a relationship with your representative will ensure they are already familiar with you and your campaign, which may help expedite and ease the process if you do have any issues that warrant their support.

Dealing with rejected creative can be a major hassle for marketers but having an internal ally able to explain and expedite the review process can be instrumental in facilitating the approval process.

This is the first of a two-part series. In the second part of this series, I’ll highlight another ad rejection issue – this time, with YouTube – that didn’t quite have the same Cinderella story. To be notified of the next post focused on YouTube, follow us on social media or subscribe to our newsletter.

If you need help managing your social media, ads or reputation online, reach out to me to get the conversation going.