Advanced Targeting Options for Facebook Ads

Do you spend a lot on PPC advertising, only to get a lot of traffic but few conversions? If so, then targeting might be the issue. Facebook’s advertising platform offers the most highly specific audience targeting options – options that will almost ensure that you get the most relevant traffic possible for your business. In this post, we’re going to look at how you can use Facebook’s advanced targeting options to create the best ads for your business.

Custom Audiences

When you are setting up an ad campaign, the first option in the Choose Your Audience section is to choose or create a new Custom Audience.


When you click the Create New Custom Audience, you have the option to choose to create a new Custom Audience from a Customer List, Website Traffic, or App Activity.


The Customer List option allows you to upload the emails or phone numbers you have collected for your business. This would allow you to create ads specific to your email list subscribers, leads from your website, and customers in your database.


The Website Traffic option gives you a tracking pixel to install on your website. You can then create custom audiences for anyone who visits your website, people who visit specific pages, people that visit specific pages but not others, or people who haven’t visited your website in a certain amount of time.


The App Activity option allows businesses that have mobile apps for their business to tap into the IDs of users of their app to create custom audiences.


Custom Audiences can be included or excluded from your ads target audience. For example, let’s say that you have a custom audience for your website visitors and a custom audience for your current customers. You wouldn’t want to advertise a product to people who have already bought it (unless you wanted to suggest they buy it for someone as a gift). So you could include your custom audience of website visitors and exclude your custom audience of customers.


Next on the list of advanced targeting options is Location. Unlike most advertising platforms that only allow you to choose a location to include for your advertising audience, Facebook allows you to include specific locations or exclude them.


For example, let’s say that you own a business that will ship products anywhere in the US, but also allows for free pickup within Los Angeles. You could create one ad for the United States as a whole that talks about a free shipping deal, excluding Los Angeles. Then create an ad for Los Angeles that says you can pickup the item for free today.


Facebook also offers the option of choosing whether you want to show your ad to people who live in a specific location or people who have just traveled there.


This can be a great setting for businesses that specifically want to advertise to tourists.

More Demographics

After Age, Gender, and Language (all of which are pretty common targeting options), you will find More Demographics. This dropdown opens the door to an array of options to target your ad audience.


First, you have the Relationship section. This will allow you to target ads towards people interested in men, women, or both and people with specific relationship statuses.


Next, you have the Education section. This will allow you to target ads to people based on their educational level, field of study, school, and when they attended.


You have the Work section that allows you to target ads based on details about their current job. This includes people who work in the office versus those who work from home.


You have the Financial section that allows you to target ads to people with a specific household income or net worth. If you have a high-ticket product or service, this option will allow you to target only those who can afford it.


You have the Home section that allows you to target ads based on whether people are renting an apartment or those who have just purchased their first home, as well as those with specific types of households (children in the home, empty nesters, grandparents, etc.).


You also have several other specific sections for Generation, specific types of parents, specific types of moms, political affiliations, and those who have just listed specific Life Events.


As you can see, the More Demographics section can help you get really granular with who you target your ads towards on Facebook.


Facebook can help you reach specific audiences by looking at their interests, activities, the Pages they have liked, and closely related topics. Interest categories include Business, Entertainment, Family, Fitness, Food, Hobbies, Shopping, Sports, and Technology..


Each main category includes a dozen or more subcategories. For example, under Entertainment, you can zero in on people who like ballet as a live event. Under Fitness, you can zero in on people who are bodybuilding or dieting. Under Technology, you can zero in on people who like consumer electronics such as cameras or ereaders.


Facebook will allow you to reach people based on purchase behaviors or intents, device usage and more, some of which is available for US audiences only.


Each main category includes a dozen or more subcategories. For example, under Automotive, you can zero in on people who recently purchased an SUV. Under Financial, you can zero in on people who have multiple lines of credit. Under Seasonal, you can zero in on parents of graduates.


Another way to target your ad audience is to choose whether you want to include or exclude people who are connected to your Facebook pages, events, and apps. You can also choose to include friends of those connected to your Facebook pages, events, and apps.


This is especially useful in campaigns where you are trying to build your fan base. You may not want fans of one page to become fans of another, or you may want friends of fans of you one of your pages to become a fan of another.

Save Your Audience

Once you’ve configured your perfect ad audience, you can use the Save This Audience checkbox to name and save your audience for future reference. You can then quickly access it by using the dropdown at the top left of the Choose Your Audience section.


You can always modify your saved audience and re-save it for future use as well.

In Conclusion

As you can see, Facebook offers lots of targeted options for defining your advertising audience. Use these options to ensure that your ad only reaches the most qualified prospects for your business.

Kristi Hines

About the Author: Kristi Hines

Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, professional blogger, and digital marketing enthusiast.