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The Targeting Capabilities of Facebook Ads

Facebook Ads are renowned for their versatility in targeting options, allowing you to really find the best fit customers for your ads.

Whether you want to target by demographic or locate people who have just passed through your store location, Facebook Ads allow you to do just this.

There are a few main targeting groups you can narrow your focus down to, with more specific options within these categories.

Here are the main ways in which you can target your audience on Facebook.

Core Audiences

Core audiences are the audiences you can select for your ads with just a few clicks. These audiences can be as broad or as wide as you need them to be. They use pre-determined categories to section your audience based on who and what you’re trying to achieve. Some of these categories include:

  • Location – in this category, you can choose to segment location by those who live in an area, those who have just visited an area, those who work in the area and many more criteria to really narrow down and niche your audience.
  • Demographics – the most basic of segmentation tactics, but one not to be ignored. Targeting by age, sex, marital status and more can be vital in attracting the audience you want. There are limits to this, for example you can no longer target by income, but other variables such as targeting by interest in luxury goods, or job title, can also produce the same effects.
  • Interests – by targeting your ads based on what people have already shown interest in, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of your ideal customer. If you’re selling running shoes, you wouldn’t necessarily target to someone who’s liked pages involved rom-coms and festivals but would to those who liked athletics brands and fitness pages.
  • Behaviour – this one is slightly more complicated. It involves using Facebook Pixel to add code into your website that tracks online action on your site – for example it can be of more use to show an ad to somebody who has visited the blog page of your website and already has brand awareness than to somebody completely new to your site.
  • Connections – reaching those who are not directly interacting with your page, but are friend of people who do, or are linked to your page through an event you’re a part of. This allows companies to target those with similar interests who are in some way tied to their specific business.

Custom Audiences

These audiences are built from the data you already have on hand in your company. This makes it easier to reconnect with those people interested in your business and target these people in the hopes of encouraging them to convert on your ad.

These audiences can be built from your contact lists. These are the people who have registered their interest in your website before. Or who have phoned you or are subscribed to your mailing list.

This is a great way of targeting as you reinforce your message and brand to those who have already come into contact with you and may now be ready to buy.

You could also include tracking on your website and choose to show your ads to those who have visited your site, or target people who have downloaded your app as they will already be familiar with your company.

This type of targeting is called remarketing and it focuses on an audience who already have prior knowledge or experiences with your company to encourage them to convert the next time an interaction occurs.

Lookalike Audiences

The beauty of lookalike audiences is that you are able to use existing data to build up a profile of the people Facebook believes are more likely to want your product or service.

This can be done in two main ways. The first is by using the Insights tab on your ad account to define who this audience is and increase your chances of reaching them.

The second is by uploading your mailing list to Facebook, who will identify profiles based on these, and then recommend extremely similar profiles for you to target.

This is great as all of the work is done for you by those who have previously subscribed, and the data is displayed almost immediately from something as simple as an email address, not to mention all of this is GDPR compliant.

This has been proven to provide results, as the current people you have subscribed are interested in your business, so it is incredibly likely that the similar profiles also will be.

Facebook Ads are great, as they allow you to reach the audience who really matter to you. For help setting up a Facebook Ads campaign, or assistance running your current campaign, contact one of our professionals at WNW Digital today.

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Heather Hirst
Currently undertaking a Communications degree at Bournemouth University, Heather is the Digital Marketing Intern at WNW Digital. She is part of the digital marketing team and here to gain industry experience and develop her skills in all elements of WNW’s expertise. You can contact her at

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