How to Make Use of Facebook Custom Audiences

18 April 2016

Imagine if you could put an ad in a newspaper but only pay for people who had expressed a definite interest in buying your product to see it. Or if you could change that ad depending on how engaged a customer is with your business…

Facebook custom audiences is a way of doing precisely that. You can target customers who already know you and your brand with Facebook ads.

You can build a custom audience on Facebook by uploading a list of email addresses or telephone numbers, and then Facebook matches these details to accounts. You can also build audiences based on people who have visited your website or used your mobile app. Then, you are able to target ads to those people on the site.

This gives you a unique opportunity to send ads directly to people who have expressed an interest in your brand in the past. You can segment your email list and get even more specific, showing ads to people who have not opened your emails recently, or to those who have subscribed in the past month, for instance.

Test out some of these ideas to make use of the potential of advertising to custom audiences:

  • Target existing customers to encourage them to become fans of your Facebook Page

  • Retarget people who added items to their cart but did not make a purchase

  • Use custom audiences to exclude people from targeting, too. If you want to use Facebook ads to increase your email subscriber list, exclude those who are already on it so you don’t waste money

  • Segment your email list according to domain, and target people who work at a particular organisation

  • Target your best customers. Give them bonuses or special offers to encourage them to become brand ambassadors

  • Download a list of your LinkedIn contacts as a CSV file and target them with an ad on Facebook that recognises the unique nature of LinkedIn relationships, i.e. that they tend to be professional colleagues and potential partners rather than casual contacts

  • Prompt people to take an action. Have you got a list of the email addresses of people who have undertaken a free trial of your product or service? Remind them to sign up for your paid service with Facebook ads

  • Upsell new or additional products to customers who have already made a purchase.

Look into Facebook custom audiences and see if there are ways to target specific groups of your customers who could benefit from ads that are directed straight at them. Create new ads for each targeted group, if necessary, and measure and track the results you get. This degree of targeting shows a lot of promise for businesses with an online presence. Make the most of it and see what works for you.