How to Use Facebook Interest Targeting the Right Way
One of the biggest marketing mistakes brands make is trying to appeal to everyone at one. Without a target audience, your marketing may come up empty because you are casting too wide a net. The most efficient way to reach more qualified customers is to target smaller, specific groups. Most brands struggle when it comes to defining their ideal audiences. Facebook offers so many ways to target potential customers. Similar to many other social advertising platforms, Facebook gives you the control to target specific interests so you ’ re showing ads only to your direct list of leads or those who have a similar makeup. Facebook is great when it comes to targeting options, but if you don ’t know how to navigate through the options it’ s easy to feel lost, and give up. This guide and worksheet were created to help guide you run a successful marketing campaign on Facebook.
What Is Interest Targeting — And How Does Facebook Know What You are Interested In?
On Facebook, you can target people who have expressed an interest in or like pages related to another page or topic. There are thousands of interests to target, and they’re located in the Interests section of your ad set settings.
When you type something into the search box, Facebook will suggest matching or related interests. Interest targeting usually means that you ’ retargeting audiences with similar interests. How does facebook know your audience's interests? Well. .Facebook collects every information from every user on their platform
So... What does this mean?
- Think of it this way, Facebook knows you — every like, comment, share, that you’ve ever done, well... Facebook tracks it all. Even videos you've stopped to watch when no one is looking. Yes, Facebook tracks that too.
- Since Facebook collects all this data this means we can use all of it! For years big companies were able to spend millions each year collecting data on their customers. And now, Facebook has even more data on everyone around and is making it accessible for small brands, and entrepreneurs to have access to the same amount of data.
- Interests are one of the targeting areas where things get really interesting (get it) because you can type in just about any topic, brand, place, or other concept and target a specific audience or group of people that may potentially be interested in your offer.
Why is Targeting so Important?
Facebook advertising is a quick and budget-friendly way of reaching out to your target audience. Using Facebook Ads, you will be able to target users according to their interests. Facebook Ads is also a more cost-effective alternative and you can spend a few dollars to reach anyone, anywhere in the world. But your goals as a business should not be to reach everyone. An effective marketing strategy is focused on narrowing to a core or "targeted" audience. Think about it, narrowing your focus helps your craft a more appealing message that speaks directly to the type of audience who are more likely to convert into customers. Whereas, having a broader message does not move your customers to act upon your offer. Many businesses are failing to optimize their efforts, it’ s now possible to narrow down your target audience even further based on their interests. This means that you would be able to get closer to those who would be most attracted to what you have to offer, and you would appeal to them on an emotional level by referencing those interests. Below I'll show you just how you can leverage interest targeting to reach your ideal audience,
Facebook Ad Targeting Overview
Facebook ad targeting can be broken down into 8 categories. This is the high-level overview:
- Interests (everything from brand pages to celebrities and most topics you can think of)
- Custom Audiences (these are groups you create based upon your email lists, phone numbers, app users, or website retargeting)
- Lookalike Audiences (audiences similar to your Interests Targeting or Custom Audiences)
- Location (DMA, zip code, city, county, state, or country)
- Age & Gender
- Demographics (income, job title, employer name, language, relationship status, education, financial, home ownership, parental status, etc.)
- Behaviors (charitable activities, online shopping habits, car shopping, financial spending, mobile devices, travel habits, etc.)
- More Categories (expats of specific countries and their friend/family)
- Connections (people connected to your page, app, or event)
Within the “Interest targeting” box lies four different types of targeting…
- More Categories
Interest-based targeting is generally used for cold audiences – when you want to introduce yourself to people who haven’t heard of you before.
When you search on Google, you have intent. You know what you’re searching for – you have an intention of finding something. Whereas, on Facebook people may not have a specific intent. Most times, they are looking to see what’s been happening with their friends, family, and spend countless of hours engaging in a lot of different things. Notice I didn’t mention anything about ads because they don’t go on Facebook to see your ads. They could care less. During the hours they spend on the platform, Facebook collects all that data and it’s our job to identify what we might think our customers like.
We need to ask questions, such as:
- What does our "Potential" customer like on Facebook?
- What types of shows do they watch?
- What celebrities do they follow?
- Where do they shop?
- What are some of their favorite activities to be involved in?
For example: If I run a high-end restaurant, I may want to target customers who have an interest in:
- Certain types of food
- Watch certain types of food shows (i .e food network)
- Follow certain celebrity chefs
- Follow certain popular food magazines
The key that interested-based targeting offers you is that you can speak to what you already know they like.
How to Identify your Customers using Facebook
As a business owner, we want to find out as much as possible about our customer and their interests. That means aligning their interests with what they are already engaging with online. Think about what pages they may like, products they buy, or any other kind of keyword that will help us in identifying our target audience. We are going to capture as many data points we can about our niche customers. This will help us target our audience as close as possible.