Getting Your Facebook Ads in Front of the Right Audience
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Getting Your Facebook Ads in Front of the Right Audience
Kate Gingold
/ Categories: The Sprocket Report

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Getting Your Facebook Ads in Front of the Right Audience

Fifteenth in a series

We have been talking a lot about how to create a Facebook (or Meta) ad and how to track that ad’s effectiveness, but let’s take a step back and think about your ad’s audience.

One single ad could inspire incredible website traffic or just crickets, depending on whose eyes are seeing the ad. Since it’s important that your Facebook ad is getting in front of the eyes most likely to respond, let’s take a look at how to find the right audience for your message.

Facebook helps build three kinds of audiences:  Default, Custom, and Lookalike. They each have their advantages and disadvantages, although your choice may be limited depending on the marketing data available to you. Check out the overview below to see why.

Creating a Default Facebook Audience

The Default audience is created by choosing the kind of people you want to see your ad, starting very generally and then homing in on specifics. For instance, if you are advertising your cleaning services, you may want to start by choosing a geographic area because you won’t be visiting clients in a different state. You may also want to target people of a certain age range since teenagers aren’t likely to hire you. If most of your clients tend to be women, you can specify gender. You can even add income level, if that’s a factor for your business, or an educational level that might indicate their income.

The drawback to creating this audience is that most of the data that Facebook draws from is self-reported and not everyone provides this kind of information. Studies show that people are more likely to report lifestyle data than other types, so it can pay to be a bit creative. Expectant mothers, as an example, might be a group more interested in cleaning services than the general population.

Crafting a Custom Facebook Audience

More attention is being given to online privacy considerations, which is good for individuals, but tough for marketing. Because of this, the Custom audience has taken a few hits. You can no longer rely on the data collected from tracking done on other websites in addition to tracking on Facebook itself. Instead, experts suggest focusing on Facebook’s user data alone.

The Custom audience is gathered from previous interactions with your brand on the platform. Naturally, the more people who have engaged with you, the bigger your audience, so an active organic campaign is important to deepening your pool. Facebook will also target people who have not interacted with your brand but who do share similar characteristics.

Building a Lookalike Facebook Audience

Like the name says, this audience is created by assessing your current clients and then finding new people whose personas look alike. For this to work well, you need to have a good source of data such as your client list or the client list of a complementary or competitive business.

Of course, not everyone on the list will also be on Facebook or, at least, not recognized by Facebook if they used a different email address on their profile. If your list doesn’t have enough data to work with, Facebook will let you know.

As always, testing is super important when building your audience. After you make your choices, try your ad out. If you aren’t getting the response you were expecting, tweak your audience and try again. There are so many moving parts, that it’s rare to hit it out of the park during your first time up to bat.

Restrictions on the use of third-party cookies to collect marketing data has been growing for years and cookies will be fully deprecated in the coming months. With less data to work with, targeting an audience will be trickier than ever. Marketing companies will no doubt come up with new options, but in the meantime, working with what the Facebook platform offers seems to be the best bet.

“Everyone” has never been and never will be your target market. Way back when you created your business plan, you also identified your audience. Since then, you may have had your head down, completing your day-to-day tasks. When you work with the Sprocket Websites team, we help unlock all that important information in your head and run it through our tools and processes to build your customized marketing campaign. Call today to learn more!

Photo by anna-m. w.

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Kate Gingold

Kate GingoldKate Gingold

I have been writing a blog with web marketing tips and techniques every other week since 2003. In addition to blogging and client content writing, I write books and a blog on local history.

Other posts by Kate Gingold
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Full biography

I have been writing a blog with web marketing tips and techniques every other week since 2003. In addition to blogging and client content writing, I write books and a blog on local history.

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