Recently, this ad appeared in my Facebook feed.
Jack’s Meat Market and Deli is about five minutes from my little in-town office. I have been there on occasion.
Now they have a new addition – breakfast. And they are letting me know about it on my feed. This is an example of Facebook’s ad targeting feature, which many small businesses are not yet using. But they should be.
I may just stop by Jack’s for breakfast one of these mornings.
The idea of targeted Facebook ads is to reach very specific groups of people who are more likely to become customers of your business.
For local businesses, this is especially important, because their target markets are local as well. If for example, a new deli opens, how does that owner use social media to get business that will clearly be local rather than spending money to blanket national audiences that will never become customers?
What that deli owner can do is take a look at business locations that surround them and target those businesses with a less expensive, localized Facebook campaign.
They can use the “ad create tool” to post specific messages to specific people – by location, by demographics, by interests, and by behaviors.
There is also an advanced targeting feature. Your interest, however, is targeting business locations that surround you, so that employees there will know who you are, what you offer, and where you are.
Before you begin
Start by creating posts that are relevant to your local community.
To do this, take the following steps:
You should begin to get “on the radar” of locals and local businesses. At least then they will know you exist.
Getting started with Facebook ads
Access the Add Create feature and begin to work through the steps.
As you can see, you will be defining your campaign objective first, using one of three criteria. A local business owner would probably choose “Reach people near your business” or “Get people to visit your stores”.
Once you have designated your objective, you will be prompted to set up your location. If you click on the “Learn More” link, you will receive complete and easy instructions for setting your location.
Creating your account
You will then be asked to create your account. Follow the prompts.
Note: On all screens, there will be help and more information that will be invaluable, along with the right-hand rail. There are “how to” articles that will walk you through every step. Use them.
You can also find a video on the Facebook Business Target Ad Site. This will walk you through your ad creation set-up.
Creating your campaign
Once you have set up your basic ad creation account, you are ready to create an ad (post) and use Facebook’s Ad Manager tool.
You will want to craft a post that introduces your business and what value you provide to potential customers. You will certainly want to use visuals, and you may want to offer a special discount to run for a short period of time.
If you do not believe that you can create this post, then hire someone or use some tools that make it easier.
When you are satisfied with your post, publish it.
Once inside your Ads Manager account, click the button to “Create a Campaign”. You will be asked to identify an objective and then will be prompted to choose the post you want to “promote.”
Image Source: Social Media Examiner
Facebook provides a lot of options for locations. For example, you can choose a geographical radius.
However, what you want to do is go far deeper than that. To do this, you will want to use the “Audience” link and the drop-down menu which will take you to “Work” and then “Employers.”
Image Source: Social Media Examiner
Now you can enter the name of a specific business. Make sure that you check the business for multiple locations. You want to specify the location nearest to you.
Now, here is one small snag. You have to enter each company individually – Facebook does not have a method for multiple entries at a time.
This is the easy part. You only have to state how much you want to spend a day (maybe begin with $2.00) and how long you want the ad to run. If you are offering a special promotion, you will want that ad to run throughout that promotion. You set the start and end date, and Facebook does the rest.
Tip: If you plan on running multiple campaigns, you may want to name them. When you receive the automated reports from Facebook about likes and shares, you will want to know which ad campaign is performing best, so you can replicate it with different pictures, a bit different text, and the same promotion that seemed to work for you.
Jasper’s Market can advertise within a certain radius of businesses and neighborhoods. Or, because each of its three locations in California is within business districts, it would make sense for ads to be targeted to surrounding businesses of all three locations.
This ad is great because it has great visuals and it offers a promotion with an expiration date. And in California, there is a large population interested in eating healthy.
Easy and cheap – What could be better?
So much advertising is a matter of throwing a lot of content out there and hoping that it will reach enough of a target audience to make it worth the cost.
The unique initiative of being proactive and targeting people who spend their days in your surroundings is a great concept. And, as inexpensive as this advertising is, there is no reason not to go for it.
Guest Author: Rick Riddle is a career advisor, marketing consultant, and an up-and-coming blogger. As a part of OKdissertations team, he writes mostly about e-learning, digital marketing, entrepreneurship, and blogging. Follow Rick on twitter and reach him out on LinkedIn to keep up with his latest publications.
One of the benefits of advertising on Facebook is its ability to target ads. Options include location, age, gender, interests, broad-range categories, and connections.
This article outlines the different options in terms of their applicability and usefulness.
The location includes country, state/province, city, and zip code. Facebook requires that at least one country be included before an ad can be created. Up to 25 countries can be targeted with each ad. If “city” is chosen, radius perimeters appear that range from 10 to 50 miles around the selected city or cities.
If you target more than one country, you will be unable to target specific cities. To target specific cities, create multiple ads that each targets a single country.
While the location may be useful to e-commerce merchants — those that only sell inside the U.S., for example — it is most beneficial to brick-and-mortar businesses that serve a specific geographic area.
Merchants who sell products to a specific age group, or that require “age-gating” due to the type of products sold, should use this option, selecting the minimum and maximum age range.
Choose “All” under Gender unless you only want to target either men or women. Some Facebook users don’t specify gender; the only way to reach everyone is to select “All.”
Alternatively, you could create two versions of your ad — one for women and one for men — and then monitor conversion rates to see which is more responsive.
Interest-based targeting is where Facebook excels as it records everything a person has liked or expressed an interest in. Two options are available: “Precise Interests” and “Broad Categories.”
Precise Interests. Choose this option to reach people who have expressed an interest on their personal timeline that is similar to the product you’re offering. These may be drawn from their listed interests, activities, education and job titles, pages they like, or groups to which they belong.
Broad Categories. Use broad category targeting to reach a wider audience that shares similar interest and traits, but which falls into a certain general category. Your ads will be shown to people who have included information in their timelines relevant to that category.
Both can be used concurrently. For example, you could target “Labrador Retrievers” under Precise Interests and “Dogs” under Broad Categories.
As you target people using Precise Interests, notice that other suggested likes and interests appear. These consist of terms that are most common among the people included in your targeting criteria. Targeting these words will help increase the size of your potential audience while making sure that you are still reaching people with relevant interests.
You may also notice that some terms under Precise Interests have a hashtag associated with them. Facebook recently started incorporating hashtags in a manner similar to Twitter.
Unique to Facebook, Connections allows you to target ads to people who have a certain type of connection to your Page. It includes anyone, only people who are connected to your Page, and only people who are not connected to the Page.
You can also choose “Friends of Connections,” which targets people whose friends are connected to your Page, based on the premise that people are more likely to interact with Pages their friends are connected to.
The targeting selections shown above are the most popular. However, Facebook also offers advanced options based on relationship status, language, education, and workplace.
Two that are even more advanced — Custom Audiences and Lookalike Audiences — require the use of Facebook Power Editor, for advertisers with many campaigns or ads.
Custom audiences. Custom audiences allow advertisers to find members of their offline audiences who are also on Facebook using email addresses, phone numbers, or Facebook user IDs to make the match.
This means that, in addition to targeting people among the general Facebook population, you can reach segments based on information you already have about them via your own, offline databases.
Lookalike audiences. Lookalike audiences (PDF) let you find more people who are similar to those in your custom audience lists and are likely to have an interest in your products.