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Facebook ad Targeting: 4 killer Tips

Estimated reading time: 4 minutes

We all know by now that social media is a powerful way to increase your brand exposure and drive traffic. Whilst Instagram and Twitter are providing strong platforms for advertising, Facebook remains number one with most marketeers.

In August 2016, Facebook hit a key milestone when CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that 1 billion users had logged in on a single day and by June 2017 there were 2 billion active monthly users, a 17% annual increase. Now if that isn’t a customer base, what is?!

From the Dollar Shave Club to Trump’s presidential campaign (take from that what you will) brands (and politicians) are demonstrating that Facebook ads work.

One of the great things about advertising on Facebook as a business is that it allows you to capitalise on new trends quickly, unlike a longer-term digital marketing service such as SEO.

At this point in time there is only 2 million advertisers on Facebook, which may seem vast but it really isn’t. So, what better time to take advantage of this powerful platform for your business.

Key to the success of any Facebook ad campaign is targeting. Get this right and you will really reap the rewards. Here’s a few tips.

1. Get your criteria spot on

Facebook ad Targeting: 4 killer tips

Really think about the product or service you’re offering and who exactly is likely to buy. It’s no good targeting men between the ages of 18 and 65 if you’re selling skateboards. Your ad will return a low ROI because of its irrelevance to so many people in that catchment.

Always be specific and work towards attracting your key personas. Facebook offers plenty of targeting options from demographics and interests to connections and behaviours, meaning you can get super specific. Here’s a helpful infographic which breaks down each category.

2. Make the most of Facebook’s purchasing behaviour feature

This has proven to be an absolute godsend for business owners and marketers. Companies are no longer restricted to their own CRM as Facebook provides access to its immense catalogue of buyer behaviour. That’s right, the social media giant partnered with leading data brokers in 2013, gaining access to trillions of annual transactions.

Now Facebook provides this data to you in it’s ‘purchase behaviour’ feature which enables you to really sharpen your targeting. Categories include buyer profiles (i.e. fashionistas), purchase habits (i.e. above average spending) and store types (i.e. luxury store) meaning you can get noticed by the people that matter to you.

Facebook ad Targeting: 4 killer tips

3. Build custom audiences

Facebook now offers a nifty little feature which enables you to connect with existing contacts. This not only helps reinforce your brand on social media also builds brand loyalty, order frequency and overall customer value.

You can also flip this on its head and make it work the other way, picking and choosing who sees what. For example, if you’re offering 50% off subscriptions to generate new customers then you wouldn’t want it to appear in the feeds of your loyal customers.

You can build your own custom audience by uploading an existing customer phone or email list to Facebook. Then pick and choose who to target or leave out. It’s a powerful feature that can make a huge difference to your advertising strategy, here’s how to get started.

4. Take advantage of life events targeting

Facebook ad Targeting: 4 killer tips

So many buying decisions nowadays are linked to a specific life event: a newly engaged female booking a wedding videographer, a male buying carpets for his new home, a divorcee seeking legal services…you get the gist. With Facebook’s life event targeting feature, you can now reach these people based on the relevance of the product or service you’re offering.

You can drill down even further by adding timescales such as ‘Newlywed (1 year)’ or ‘Newly engaged (3 months).’ Getting this specific ads a whole other dimension making your adverts even more relevant.


The world really is your oyster when it comes to advertising on Facebook as long as you take the necessary measures to drill down your audience. Following the above steps should help give you a good steer on making sure your targeting strategy is spot on.

We offer Facebook Advertising as a service as part of our PPC Management Service — call us on 0115 971 8908 if you’re interested in finding out more.

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