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Targeting Your Specific Audience with Facebook Ads – Navigating Social Media: A Field Guide Excerpt 6

facebook ad

In the past five excerpts from our book Navigating Social Media: A Field Guide,

1. You’ve determined if Facebook is right for you. Check.
2. You’ve learned how Facebook business pages operate. Check.
3. You’ve engaged your fans. Check.
4. You’ve seen the analytics side of your methods. Check.
5. You’ve networked with Facebook Graph Search. Check.

facebook ad

Now it’s time to utilize Facebook ads.

If I put my ad on a billboard or poster, will my target audience be the ones to see it? Not necessarily. Facebook allows you to pinpoint your target audience and advertise just to them without having to pay for an ad that you HOPE reaches your target. With any budget, you can run a targeted and strategic ad campaign on Facebook.

How do Facebook Ads work?

Facebook ads target the “who” instead of the “what” by looking at profile information like the user’s name, gender, music preferences, religious beliefs, etc. Companies cannot see this information until an individual has “liked” their page, but Facebook stores all of the data and uses it to find ads that are specific to the viewers. Since the ads viewers see are selected for them, the message will have a higher chance of being read and clicked on.

With search engine ads, like Google Pay Per Click (PPC), people are targeted based on their search queries. For example, if you search for “Polaroid camera”, you will see ads for Target, WalMart, and Amazon where you can buy a Polaroid camera.

On Facebook, people identify themselves as Polaroid fans by “liking” the Polaroid business page and a Polaroid camera ad can be targeted towards this specific group.

What is my goal?

Before launching an ad campaign on Facebook, make sure you know what your specific goal is. Some possible goals include:

  • Page Post Engagement
  • Page Likes
  • Clicks to Website
  • Website Conversions
  • App Installs

The Friends of my Fans: Using Sponsored Stories

If you select “Page Post Engagement” or “Page Likes” you can include ‘Sponsored Stories’. They are designed to show up in more News Feeds, including those of the friends of your fans when a fan interacts with your post. They do not cost any more, so we always recommend using Sponsored Stories.

How do I find my audience?

What age and gender is my target? Where do they live? Facebook offers tons of demographic information so you can easily see if your target demographic is online and how big the audience is.

Recently, Facebook has also added additional demographic options including:

  • Interested In
  • Relationship Status
  • Languages
  • Education
  • Workplaces

Don’t have specific target demographics? You can also segment based on broad and precise interests. If you insert precise interests, do not get too specific since Facebook is searching for the phrase you enter in profiles and posts.

3, 2, 1… Ready to Launch your Facebook Ads

Once you have chosen your audience, you can name your campaign, select a budget, and specify the schedule. Do you want the ad to run continuously or to have a start and end date? Would you like to optimize your ads for clicks or impressions?

Just remember, as with any marketing effort towards your customers, do not forget to keep your audience in mind when writing content. Whether you have a big or small budget, bad content equals bad results.

Want to learn more?

Like us on Facebook. Stay tuned for our next blog post in the book excerpt series by subscribing to our blog in the upper left corner of this page. You can also click here to download the book. You can choose which version works best for you: PDF, Kindle eBook, paperback or audio book.

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