Targeted Facebook Ads - What They Are & Why They Work.


I still talk to my mum about work sometimes, and was telling her the other day about the power of Facebook advertising. Turns out she already knew. She’d been shopping online for my brothers’ birthday presents, and was pretty irritated indeed when he used Facebook on her laptop - only to find it plastered with “all these bloody adverts” for the surprise gift she had been looking for. Why did this happen? Because Facebook is very - very - good at targeting its ads.

A great Facebook presence is a must-have for any business, especially for those looking to grow, and it is the bomb when it comes to advertising. Often though it can be a struggle. A common complaint is that it is easy to put in lots of effort for very little reward. I hear stories all the time about clients who have posted regularly and spent money boosting these posts - with few to no results.

However, get it right and Facebook is easily one of the most powerful advertising platforms out there. A leader, in fact a trailblazer, in digital marketing. This is because it is unbeatable when used for targeted advertising; collecting information about the interests and demographics of its users, so that when you create an advert you can target the specific audience you want it to appear in front of. And ruining birthday surprises. Etcetera.

The recent introduction of Facebook ‘reactions’ is an addition which will allow this targeting to become even more powerful. Whereas beforehand, users were only allowed to ‘like’ a post, there are now a variety of options, including negative expressions.

 Previously Facebook would have been able to collect information about your interests using likes; you might use this to advertise cars in front of someone who is likely to buy a new one, for example. This means you can easily put an ad out in front of everyone within ten miles of you who has shown an interest in purchasing a car, either by what web-pages they visit, or what pages they have liked.

 However with reactions comes a much more detailed way to collect information about peoples tastes. If someone were to react ‘angrily’ to a video suggesting that BMW’s are far superior to Audi’s, Facebook can catalogue them as an Audi enthusiast, rather than someone who has shown an interest in cars by watching videos. A ‘wow!' will distinguish