3 Facebook Ad Targeting Strategies for Guaranteed Success

· 5 min read · 22 comments

The success of your Facebook campaign is fundamentally connected to targeting.

Targeting is the single most important component in the entire ad mix.

Your goal should be to nail your targeting. Because when you nail it, you ripe the benefits of high Relevance Score, high conversion rate, lower costs… and, in general, better results.

So how CAN you nail it?

There are several ways.

For instance, one could be to set up targeting according to your consumer personas. But for some that might be overcomplicated. When you’re just starting out, it’s so easy to get distracted with all the different ways you can set up your ad targeting. Some people find all kinds of options within Facebook’s platform daunting.

But there are also easy ways to set up your targeting. Smart ways even experts are using.

Let me show you.

NOTE: I explain these three strategies in more detail in the guide below. In this 16 page how-to guide, you’ll find exact steps you need to take to set up the proposed targeting strategies.

Download Your FREE How-To Guide Now!

How to Guide for Getting Started with Facebook Ad Targeting

1. Target Your Existing Audiences

You probably already have a Facebook page (if you don’t you should seriously consider creating one). And on your page, you might already have a few hundred, maybe a few thousand fans. The first thing you should consider is targeting them.

You probably know all about Facebook’s miserable reach. So, chances are, most of your fans don’t see most of your updates. Targeting them would make a great idea.

Why?

Because they already showed interest in you and your work. When given the right opportunity, fans will likely become regular visitors, subscribers, or customers.

Another great opportunity is to target your existing email list. You can upload your list to Facebook and target your subscribers with your ads.

Although, of course, you can only target people who subscribed with the same email they use for Facebook. Don’t worry, Facebook will “clean” your list as you upload it. In my experience approx. half of the people don’t use the same email address. That means if you upload a list of 1,000 emails, you’ll probably end up with an audience of about 500 people.

Also, targeting your website visitors is a powerful move, because you’ve already done a whole lot to attract them to your site in the first place.

The first thing you’ll need to do is place a Facebook Pixel on your site. Even if you don’t plan to target your visitors in the near future, I strongly suggest you put in place your pixel right now. So when you do decide to target your website visitors, you’ll already have a bunch of people in your target group.

You can target your website visitors by creating Custom Audiences. You can target people who visited your site in the past 7, 30, 60, or any other number of days. An advanced move would be to target people who visited specific pages within your site.

For example, you can target people who visited a blog post on Facebook advertising and show them ads of your Facebook advertising course.

(Don’t be surprised if you see me doing that 🙂 )

facebook ad targeting strategies ad example

2. Target Your Competitors Audiences

This targeting strategy can be incredibly valuable because you’re targeting people who have shown interest in your niche.

You start by creating several ad sets in one Facebook campaign. Then you target fans of each competitor with a different ad set. The reason to make a different ad set for each competitor is because it’s the best way to know which competitor’s fans are converting best for you.

At this point, you may be wondering how can you target the pages of your competitors.

It’s quite easy actually. You enter the name of the page you want to target in the Interests field. You’ll probably notice that sometimes Facebook won’t find every single page name you enter. That’s a well-known Facebook glitch and there’s really nothing you can do about.

3. Target Lookalike Audiences

We are moving further away from your core followers, but lookalike audiences should still be inside your sweet spot.

Targeting Lookalike Audiences is a way to reach new people who are likely to be interested in your business. Facebook helps you find people who share similar traits to the people you already have in your audience.

You can base your Lookalike Audience on a variety of sources such as people who like your page, or visited your website.

Lookalike Audiences are so powerful because they help you expand and scale your ideal audience. You’ll sometimes struggle to target new people continuously, and Lookalike Audiences will help you with just that.

Let Me Know How It Goes

You sometimes struggle to target the right people, your ideal audience. Especially if you’re just starting with Facebook advertising, it’s easy to get confused.

Try the audiences I suggest in this article and let me know how it goes in the comments.

Also, it would mean the world to me if you could share this article with at least one person who you think could benefit from these tips.

Zoran Bosancic

Written by Zoran Bosancic

Zoran has made it his personal mission to help every aspiring individual out there start a business he will love building.

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22 comments

  1. Love this post! I’ve only just gotten started using Facebook ads and have been wondering who I should target. Very insightful! I never thought about targeting a competitor’s audience or being able to enter your email list and target those contacts.

    Cristina

    1. I really appreciate you saying that Cristina — Thanks! Let me know how it goes after you’ve implemented these tips.

  2. Hey Zoran,

    I haven’t started using Facebook as a strategy. Although I do have plans for it. Its been nothing but play. Observing and learning. I have been thinking about how to go about it. This is my first post where I have taken in everything you have said and will keep it in mind. Thanks I do appreciate how you have simplified what I have always considered a daunting process.

    Rachel.

    1. I’m glad you find my post helpful. If you haven’t been using Facebook as a part of your marketing strategy, I would suggest you integrate it as soon as possible. There’s so much you can do with Facebook advertising. Of course, it’s important to learn first, so you approach is appropriate. But you will also learn a lot by trying and taking action. Let me know how it goes when you implement FB in your marketing strategy.

  3. Thank for sharing Zoran. Form many times i wondering how website that i visited reach me in facebook.

    1. Now you know. 🙂 I’m happy to help.

  4. This is great advice and direction…we are definitely going to try these starting today!!

    1. That’s great Abhinav! Let me know how it goes.

  5. Zoran– Good article, however I gotta be real with you… As someone who has personally allocated over $500K in FB ads, there is no such thing as “Guaranteed Success”.

    Making a clickbait-ey claim like this makes you seem pretty sleazy in the eyes of people who know what they’re doing on the FB platform (although we may not be your audiences after all).

    Just wanted to share my thoughts…
    Take care!
    -N

    1. Hey, Nolan,

      You’re absolutely right. There’s no guaranteed success. Though of course, I also like to believe I have a vast experience in FB advertising and I know that there is a greater possibility of success when you apply certain tactics. And I’m certain that most of the time targeting certain audiences will increase the chance of reaching your goals. Also, you pointed out something that’s important when reading this post. I’m targeting people that are just starting out with Facebook advertising. In fact, in the upcoming days, I’ll be adding a content upgrade to this post with how-to instructions and examples.

      Anyway, thank you very much for reading and I hope you got something out of it, even though you’re an advanced FB marketer. 🙂

      Best,
      Zoran

  6. Hey Zoran! Nice blog, this is my first time visiting your site. Quite interesting.

    1. Hi, Audrey! 🙂 Thank you so much! Hope you’ll like my content. If you have any questions, write them in the comments or hit the contact button.

  7. This was an excellent read Zoran. Thanks for the idea on targeting competitor’s audience!

    1. You’re welcome. I’ve done a lot of Facebook campaigns and these targeting strategies always seem to work. Hope they’ll work for you as well.

  8. I’m a big fan of targeting website visitors. Great read!

    1. Thanks for reading, Mike.

  9. I’m not in love with Facebook, but these are all great tips.

    1. Thank you for reading!

  10. We’ve tried the Lookalike strategy already and found the cost per website click to be quite expensive.

    Liked your idea of targeting competitor pages. However, 5 out of the 5 competitors’ pages I tried could not be found – even though one of them has 117,000 ‘likes’. I did find other pages within the same broad industry, but it appears FB only finds those with 1m+ ‘likes’.

    Anyroad, we’ll give a few of them a try and see how we go…

    PS: I thought Nolan’s comments were a tad harsh, but I think he has a point about ‘link baity’ content. I think you need to be wary of that.

    1. The costs depend on a lot of factors. However, you are somewhat right. In my experience, the costs for a lookalike audience can vary a lot. They can be on the either part of the scale—cheap or expensive.

      That’s not the case. The number of likes doesn’t have much to do with that. I can easily target other pages with a few thousand likes. For example, when I launched my site I targeted fans of Chris Ducker and he has 18k likes. I also targeted pages with much fewer likes than he has. But yes, this Facebook glitch can be very frustrating. I would advise you try again in a couple of weeks.

      Thank you for you opinion on the post title. I didn’t write that lightly. I never do. I wouldn’t write that if I wasn’t convinced that these tactics work and if I hadn’t had experience with using them.

  11. i have tried uploading an email database to target my ads and it doesnt work despite following instructions. Do you have a manuel or guide?

    1. Did you try uploading by copy-pasting the emails?
      I don’t have a guide, but I’ll try to include one as a content upgrade to this post asap.

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