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Facebook targeting – a guide

It is estimated that Facebook will exceed 3 billion users in 2022. This is twice as much as Instagram and three times more than TikTok, although the latter has the greatest growth dynamics and the potential to fight for the crown with FB. For now, however, Meta is the most popular social networking site in the world. With so much traffic, many business owners want to advertise on this platform. However, for advertising to work and be successful, you need a strategy. What targeting options does Facebook offer? Check.

What is Facebook targeting?

Targeting is the process of serving your ads to certain types of users. For example, you can target people with an interest in a specific topic (fashion) based on age, interests, profession, and other factors. Of all the major advertising channels, it’s fair to say that Facebook has the most advanced targeting options available. Almost 2 billion active users around the world every day provide the network with the wealth of data that allows identifying the largest number of recipients.

Facebook knows practically everything about everyone, so it has an excellent basis for targeting based on:
– gender,
– age,
– location,
– language,
– relationship status,
– education,
– industry / workplace,
– general and specific interests (likes, observations, activities).

Due to the fact that the portal has such detailed information about its users, you can target your ads to extremely specific niches. For example, if you want to find fashion-conscious people living in Philadelphia, you can use interest and location targeting. Then you will choose two things: fashion and Philadelphia. This ensures that your ads will only be shown to users who meet these two criteria.

Targeting allows you to narrow your audience to a more specific group of potential customers or users of your products and services. The narrower the scope, the more relevant your ads will be.

Possibilities of targeting on FB – target audience

Facebook offers advertisers three different targeting options for business customers focused on a target audience:

– Groups of primary recipients: targeting, among others on age, interests and geographic location.
– Custom Audience Groups: Collected from CRM (Customer Relationship) data or site visitors.
– Similar audiences: determined by interests to the best customers on Facebook.

If you’ve been running your business for a while and have the data you need, your main targeting tools should be non-standard and similar audiences. But what if you’re just starting out and have no customer details or no traffic on your Facebook page? This is where the targeting against the statistics of primary audience groups available in Facebook Audience Insights comes into play. They are the starting point for any advertiser without any preparation.

Facebook’s primary audience and the reception of advertisements

The statistics of audience groups will help you to create the primary recipients of the created ad. Thanks to them, on the basis of certain criteria, you can determine whether the group should be large or narrow. For starters, all you need to do is get to know:

– Demographic data: age, gender, education, job title, religion, etc.
– Location data: for better advertising in the cities, countries and communities where you intend to do business.
– Interests: select customers for a specific advertising category, e.g. beauty, fashion, healthy eating, fitness, etc.
– Behaviors: Include previous audience purchases and device usage.
– Contact: set a target for people who contacted your website or participated in the event.

You can also save the created audience and use it when using the FB ad manager.

Non-standard recipients and targeting those interested in the offer

Facebook also gives you the option to target people who have already shown interest in your business. Both regular customers and people who only visited the website or took specific actions in it are taken into account. You can also use the information collected in the CRM system or e-mail lists.

Another option is to target your ad to people indirectly interested in your offer. It is about identifying a group of audiences similar to those who have shown activity on the site and are willing to respond to ads. You just need to create a source group of people you know and Facebook will adapt new potential customers with common traits and interests to match it.

How to set up a Facebook ad to be effective?

The principle of targeting ads on FB is simple. The better and more accurately you know your target customer, the better you can control Facebook ads and the better your results will be. So what can you do in the targeting settings?

A. Concentrate on specific locations. You can select individual countries, but also cities or narrower areas (e.g. a district). Perfect solution if you are acting locally. It is also possible to exclude individual locations.

B. Include the age, gender and language of the target audience. By precisely limiting these parameters, you can significantly increase the effectiveness of your advertising material.

C. Establish a specific level of education, and even specify individual study courses and years of graduation. This is a good choice if you want to target only medical students with your ads.

D. Deal with specific industries, professions and employers, especially when your offer is addressed to a very specific group of people.

E. Look at life events. For example, an engaged person will get married soon, so producers and service providers dealing with everything related to the wedding reception have a chance to reach new people involved in the preparation. It is similar with the status “in a relationship”. Such relationships are an opportunity to promote their services for suppliers of small gifts, vouchers or flower mail.

F. Don’t forget about your parents. Facebook offers the possibility of reaching out to those who already have children, but also to potential future parents. E-commerce suppliers of baby accessories or children’s toys and accessories can benefit.

G. Target fans of a specific interest. Fashion, sports, culinary preferences, beauty, etc. – you can set very detailed options for targeting your ad.

H. Concentrate on the technology you are using. Providers of smartphone-related products, applications and services can take a very targeted approach in this case. They can filter the target audience by operating system (Android, iOS), phone brand and even internet connection speed.

As you can see, the issue of setting up ads on FB largely depends on the determination of the target audience and the industry in which you operate. If the scope of the offered products or services is local, the group of addressees cannot be too large. Then it is worth taking care of its precise narrowing. The right way is to find a fortunate remedy that will get you what’s best for you.

How to check the availability of your targeting ideas on Facebook?

With all the targeting ideas that pop up in your head, it’s important to check if they’re also available in Facebook’s database. Because even if the possibilities are huge, it doesn’t mean they are endless. Unfortunately, you won’t find everything there.

At the same time as you conduct your market analysis, open Facebook Audience Insights (audience statistics) in your ad account and search for a suitable term in the “Interests” section, for example (eg travel, books, soccer). If Facebook finds something relevant to your search, this targeting option is available and can later be used in your ad campaigns. Facebook Audience Insights will not only help you check the availability of your targeting solutions. It is also a helpful tool for generating new ideas.

All of these FB targeting opportunities increase the relevance of your ads to users who view them. It’s worth taking advantage of this!

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