Advanced Audience Research and Targeting
Strategies to compliment your social marketing plan
The incredible value of the Facebook Ads platform lies in its ability to offer a wealth of data about your Audience. Facebook Audience Insights is an audience research and targeting tool that can help you assess the characteristics of your existing audience and provide you with information about new prospective customers.
To begin researching an audience, choose your audience source from one of three options - Everyone on Facebook, the People Connected to Your Page or a Custom Audience.
If you don’t have a large Facebook following, choose Everyone on Facebook and begin narrowing down by selecting the Interests relevant to your business. If you operate in a niche market, one interest may not be enough and can yield a sample size that’s too small. In that case, include additional relevant interests to build a large enough audience to provide actionable insights.
To research the people connected to your page, you must have at least one thousand followers. Here you can see if they are mostly women or men, if they use Facebook actively, if they engage with ads more that the average Facebook user, and what other Facebook pages they follow. For US based audiences you can also learn about their household incomes and purchase histories.
A third method of targeting is through the use of custom audiences. This is an advanced tactic which lets you build an audience from unique data such as phone numbers, emails or visitors to your website. This can be especially useful if you have a small Facebook following but a large email list. This tactic requires some technical know-how so check out Facebook Business resources for more information.
Lastly, you can build a Lookalike Audience from a Custom Audience, a Facebook Page or a Conversion Pixel data set. A lookalike audience shares characteristics with its source audience and is therefore more likely to behave in a similar fashion. Lookalike audiences are particularly useful if your customers have many characteristics and behaviours in common. For example, if you have a custom audience of people who have purchased from your online store, you can generate a lookalike audience that has a higher chance of making a similar purchase. By having a greater understanding of who your paying customers are, you can target your ads intelligently at those who share their attributes.