Effective Facebook targeting increases ad conversions while lowering the cost per conversion—the ultimate measure of an ad’s value.
Read on to learn the eight targeting techniques you need to improve your Facebook ad performance to get the most out of your budget.
Bonus: Download a free guide that shows you how to save time and money on your Facebook ads. Find out how to reach the right customers, lower your cost-per-click, and more.
8 powerful Facebook ad targeting strategies for 2019 and beyond
1. Find your unicorn content
Let’s start with a tip about targeting your ad content, before we move into targeting the audience.
If you work in content marketing, you’ve likely already heard the buzz about “unicorn marketing.” But just in case you’ve missed the excitement about this concept coined by MobileMonkey CEO and Inc. columnist Larry Kim, here’s a quick primer.
You may already have heard of the 80/20 rule, which says that 20% of your effort will drive 80% of your results. Kim argues that for content marketing, it’s more like a 98/2 rule.
Only 2% of your content will perform well both on social and in search engine rankings, while also achieving high conversion rates. He argues that content marketing is a volume game, and you simply have to create lots of “donkey” content (you can guess what that means) to get to the unicorns.
So what’s your unicorn content? It’s that blog post that absolutely blows up on your social channels, climbs to the top of the Google rankings, and drives a ton of traffic to your landing pages.
You can’t predict what will “go unicorn” based on factors traditionally used to define great content (like great writing, keywords, and readability). Instead, you’ve got to keep a close eye on your social media analytics and performance.
When you spot overachieving content, repurpose it as a Facebook ad. Make it into an infographic and a video. Test this content in various formats to your key audiences to make it work even harder.
Most important, use the rest of our Facebook ad targeting tips to make sure you match your unicorn content to the audience that’s most likely to engage with it.
2. Target your competitors’ fans using Audience Insights
Facebook Audience Insights offers a ton of valuable information that can help you understand your Facebook followers. You can then use the data to learn how to target potential new followers and customers.
It’s such a treasure trove that we’ve got an entire article dedicated to using Audience Insights for better targeting.
But our favorite Audience Insights strategy is to use the information it provides to learn who you’re competing with on Facebook, then target your competitors’ existing fans.
Here’s a quick how-to:
- Open your Audience Insights dashboard and select Everyone on Facebook.
- Under Create Audience on the left side of the page, use the basic targeting options like location, age, gender, and interests to build an audience that matches your target audience persona.
- Click over to the Page Likes tab to see which pages your target audience already connects with. Copy and paste this list into a spreadsheet or text file.
- Click back to the Create Audience tab and type the name of one of your competitors’ Facebook Pages in the Interests box. Not all competitors will come up as an interest, but for those that do…
- Check out the demographics information on the right side of the screen to see if you can gain any additional audience insights that will help you target yours ads more precisely.
- Create a new audience based on these new demographic insights, then test it against one of your existing audiences.
- Or, simply click Save and you’ve got an audience based on your competitors’ fans.
Of course, you can further target this audience to make sure you get the best fit for your specific business and campaign goals, but this is a great way to start finding relevant people on Facebook.
You can find more details in our Audience Insights how-to article.
3. Use Custom Audiences for remarketing
Remarketing is a powerful Facebook targeting strategy to connect with potential customers who have already expressed interest in your products.
Using Facebook Custom Audiences targeting options, you can choose to show your ads to people who have recently viewed your website, people who have looked at sales pages, or even people who have looked at specific products. You can also choose to exclude people who have purchased recently, if you think they are unlikely to convert again soon.
Before you can use Facebook Custom Audiences based on website visits, you need to install the Facebook Pixel.
Once that’s done, here’s how to create your remarketing audience:
- Go to Audiences with your Ads Manager.
- Click Create a Custom Audience.
- Click Website Traffic.
- Choose your pixel.
- Set your targeting rules.
- Name your audience and click Create Audience.
Find more details in our blog post on how to use Facebook Custom Audiences.