Facebook Audiences. The Way to Success

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According to The Mirror British people spend 26.5 hours per month on Facebook. This provides a huge opportunity for companies to expose their products to their target audience. The platform offers thousands of ways to get it done in a successful way. Here you will find a few quick and easy ways to target users that will make your business stand out from your competitors.

Target users according to their recent purchasing behaviour

Back in 2013 Facebook was criticised because it offered a bad ROI for companies. That year the platform decided to partner with three data giants Epsilon, Acxiom and Datalogix allowing Facebook to get data from its customers’ purchases linking their loyalty programs to their Facebook profiles.

This way of targeting matches anonymised data such as the emails and phone number that Facebook keeps in its own database with the information that those users have provided to those loyalty programs. If that information matches, Facebook will display the ad to the user.

All that of data helped Facebook to better understand its users, not just how many hours they spent playing games on the social network or the pages they liked, but also their purchase behaviour and what products they had recently bought: are they vegetarian? Do they have enough time to cook? If not, they might be inclined to purchase from companies such as Deliveroo or Uber eats… All this data helps advertisers better target its customers according to their purchasing behaviours.

It goes so deep that it even tracks the way people travel as in the following example:

Facebook Targeting Options

There are many more categories such as educational, financial, life events, date of birth… and within each one there is a drop-down menu that allows us to narrow down our target until we have selected the persona we had in mind to sell our product or acquire new customers. On the right side, we will be able to find how many people are in each category. It requires at least 100 people, but it works better when the audience is more than 1,000 people.

Custom audiences – how to reach thousands of users with just a few clicks

Custom audiences have been running for a long time on Facebook and offer a wide range of possibilities to target your potential users in many different ways.

Facebook Custom Audiences

Here, we would like to highlight the main audiences we will be able to create:

  • Customer file (or list): it’s as simple as uploading the list of users that we have in our database and Facebook will match them with its existing users in the platform. On average, Facebook matches between 60-80% of the list uploaded.
  • Website traffic: instead of using information previously uploaded, we will use the information compiled by our Facebook Pixel. Then, we will be able to target all users that have visited our site in the past 180 days!
  • App activity: if our business has an app, we can track users and remarket them on Facebook or Instagram.
  • Lookalike audiences: once we have created a custom audience on Facebook we can create a broader audience. Facebook will work to find common characteristics such as gender, likes, age, interests… and will create a list of users. The minimum audience for Lookalike is 1% of the selected country. In the UK the minimum will be 400,000 users.

However, since the scandal with Cambridge Analytica, Facebook has decided to make some changes. Among them is the removal of partner categories that helped businesses to create audiences based on data from companies such as Oracle.

Another change has been made to list-based custom audiences, but this time it won’t make things more difficult. The only change will be that now Facebook will ask for the “original data source”: from customers and partners, directly from customers or from partners.

Facebook Audiences Customers

Despite these changes, we will still be able to target users based on our audiences on Facebook, Instagram and Audience Network.

Summing up…

There isn’t only one way to target users on Facebook. Testing is the key here. Targeting users according to their behaviour is a good way to start. Especially if we have just started and don’t have any previous data from users. This will help us to start exposing our brand to new users. There are many ways to do that, but Facebook divides them into three categories: demographics, interests and behaviours.

Once we start to get some traffic to our site, we can use that audience to create Lookalikes that will push our brand further – minimum reach 1% of the population of the country.

And, last but not least, we can’t forget to retarget those customers that visit our site but didn’t convert. Creating a retargeting audience only takes a few minutes and will usually have a much lower cost per conversion as those users are already interested in the brand and we will be more able to make a conversion.

Want to get more leads/customers without increasing your ad spend?

By targeting campaigns better, by testing ads, by testing landing pages and by continually optimising every aspect of the campaigns we run, you can get a better return on your ad spend.


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