Create Winning Facebook Ads – Improve Your Facebook Ad Targeting

Why do we need Facebook’s ad targeting and how do we master it?

Every so often businesses wonder why their competitors are smashing goals with their target audience’s reach and engagement with their Facebook Ads and campaigns. But what makes a Facebook ad hit a target and how do we execute the best strategy ever?!

In the first part of our Creating Winning Facebook Ads blog series, we discussed the importance of aligning your campaign goals with the right Facebook ad objective. In the second installment, we dove into the importance of using custom and lookalike audiences to create winning Facebook Ads and the third and final installment is all about Facebook Ads Targeting!

Why do we need Facebook Ads? Because there are over 2 Billion users on Facebook and people spend a ridiculous amount of time scrolling the feed. Facebook users alone spend 40 minutes on average browsing the site during each visit. People use Facebook as a means of searching for brands and services they can trust. But how do we achieve this trust as a business? By building your presence online and reaching out to your target audience on a personal level. Is it possible? Yes!

It gets harder and a lot more expensive for brands to make a name for themselves on Facebook. Why? Because of the ever-changing Facebook Algorithm: in 2018 Facebook significantly limited organic reach for businesses on Facebook which means the more budget you have, the bigger the audience reach will be. 


Reaching the right people with your message is the key to success for an ad campaign. However, targeting is not simply figuring out the demographics audience today and you’re successful tomorrow kind of thing. There are hundreds of ways to target people and it can be a combination of these different audiences… location, demographics, interests, behaviours, engagement, partner connections, and automatic optimization.

Correct targeting will make your ads more successful and lower overall cost. This improves your return on investment (ROI) and boosts your business online.

Here are 7 ways to improve your Facebook Ad Targeting:

  1. Basic Demographics Combo

When setting up your ads, Facebook will ask you first to select the location, age, and gender of your target audience. Selecting only these 3 demographics is a huge mistake as it will make your range far too large. 

It is best practice to narrow your audience demographic down to include their interests and behaviors as setting up your ad range too broadly won’t directly target your ideal customer and your ads will be set up to fail. 

Be specific with your location. There is no point setting up ads for a brick and mortar store in Perth with ads placed all over the world. You will be throwing your money away! You can also exclude specific demographics so you are only targeting your niche audience. It is best practice to be detailed in these basic fields for all of your ads. 

  1. Audience Interest 

Be specific with your targeting. Define the interest of your ideal customer. The best way to do this is by selecting a specific interest that your competitors would have not yet thought of using. You’ll have to get creative to get ahead of your competition!

For example, if you are a gym owner you may want to include interests such as healthy eating, public figures like Ashy Bines, specific location areas where your target audience lives, whether or not you would like to target only women or only men… the audience options are literally endless!  

  1. Facebook Users Purchasing Behaviour 

It may sound scary tracking your audiences’ purchase behaviour but for marketers these metrics are golden. With this data, marketers can go beyond their market research and CRM database to create segmented targets. Segmented targets are a really important tool in Facebook Ad Creation because if you know how to use this data you will reap the benefits and increase your return on investment whilst also building up your audience.

Segmented targets are when one large market is narrowed down into smaller groups. These groups are what are called segments and they can be narrowed down even further. Basically, your goal with segmented targets is to create a message (your ad) that resonates and speaks directly to your audience. For example, you could create a segmented audience that targets women between 25 – 35 who live in Stirling and love to eat healthily and exercise and their occupation is in the health field. 

  1. Buyers Profile 

These are people who would likely buy your products and services. They are strongly aligned based on their activities and characteristics. To make your ads work better with buyer profiles, it is best to install the Facebook pixel onto your website so that you can directly target any visitor who lands on your website, clicks through to purchasing pages but then decides not to follow through. This is also known as retargeting. 

  1. Target Mobile Phones 

This sounds so cliché but the truth is people use more mobile devices than computers and laptops. People are very loyal to their phone brands and operating systems. Under the behaviours section when creating an audience – you can really niche down and specifically select which mobile device you want to target whether it’s an android or iOS device. Over 50% of all internet users are on mobile, rather than desktop! So to make your ads work effectively, they will need to be mobile friendly and have a clear call to action that is easily displayed when looking at your ad from a mobile phone.

  1. Create a lookalike audience

Lookalike audiences are exactly that… audiences that look like an audience that you have already created. Lookalike audiences basically allow you to expand beyond your reach but they still target people with your specific profiles in mind by creating audiences that look like your own targets.  

Facebook will find you the top 1% of users in your target country with similar traits as your current audience. The benefit of Facebook doing this for you is that you could potentially reach new people to expand your audience. Refer back to our previous blog on Lookalike Audiences to find out more.

  1. Page engagement

Page engagement is when someone comments, likes or follows you on social media. If someone has recently liked one of your Facebook or Instagram posts, you can target them directly by setting up a page engagement audience. This is a great way to use Facebook Ad targets as they have already engaged with your business and shown an interest – these are also known as ‘warm leads.’

Key takeaway

There are so many options for Ad targeting on Facebook and having these options available to us allows us to really be specific about who we are targeting in our market and optimising the ads and audiences so that they deliver the best results. These 7 ways will help to improve your Ad Targeting on Facebook and arm you with all the tools you need to create winning Facebook Ad Campaigns. Facebook is a goldmine of data and this is just a small selection of target audiences that are available to us.

Do you want to get more from your Facebook Ads, but aren’t sure which levers to pull?

Request a Strategy Session with us today, we’d love to help.

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