4 Ways to Find Your Target Audience on Facebook

Recently we’ve started rolling out our awesome new Facebook Video Ad templates.

We’ve shared with you the 5 big reasons why you should be using them in the first place and of course, how to get started with our FREE template.

Now, if you’d ask me what the main ingredients are that you NEED to get started with your first campaign, I’d say:

  1. A great video ad.
  2. A plan for who to target.

Of course, the video ad is taken care of if you’re a Veeroll user, and if you’re not a user yet, make sure to sign up HERE to get started.

Your Facebook Targeting Options

So, let’s talk targeting!
Do you have a minute?

Because yes, on Facebook there are a bajillion targeting options available! A few examples:

  • Interests targeting: people who have interests and/or that like pages that are related to your product/service (could be competitors or just overlapping interests).
  • Custom Audiences: people who have visited your website, bought your product, are on your email list, have watched your previous video ads…
  • Lookalike Audiences: people who have a lot in common with one of your other saved audiences.
  • Page Likes: people who like your page.
  • And then there’s… Behavioral targeting, Demographics targeting, targeting Friends of Fans… etc. etc.

There are tons of options ánd tons of options that you can combine with tons of other options!
Umm, did that overwhelm you just now?

If it did, no worries! There are indeed gazillion ways to go about it, but today we’re going to focus on just ONE: Interest targeting.

Which type of targeting should you start with?

First of all, there are no official “rules” here! Never follow anyone’s advice blindly. If you’re interested in trying out something that you think might work for your business, by all means, go ahead!

Always use your gut, think critically, do your own tests and look at the data to see what works for YOU.

Also, as Facebook is changing things up all the time (much to every advertisers’ delight, ha-ha!) it’s good to keep an open mind. The strategies that are working today might not work anymore tomorrow.

So, keep that in mind! Each business is different and there are no magic bullets.

Now that I’m done with this loooong disclaimer, let’s continue with some general advice:

If you already have…

  • a ton of website traffic
  • a big email list

… it’s a great idea to start creating Custom Audiences of those groups of people. This is simply because, whoever has already visited your website, liked your page or has opted-in to your list, is likely pretty interested in whatever you have to offer.

And, on top of that, Facebook has the awesome option of creating Lookalike Audiences, which means you can create lists of people who have a LOT in common with the people on those other lists. Pretty cool!

However, if you don’t already have…

  • a ton of website traffic
  • a big email list

…if indeed you are JUST getting started, you might want to begin with Interest targeting.

And yep, that’s what I’m going to cover today.

Before you start a campaign targeting Interests you will want to do some research.
Keep reading to learn about 4 different ways you can do this on Facebook.

4 Ways to Find Your Target Audience on Facebook

If you’re not really clear on who your target audience is, start with this post to get clarity on that first! Once you have a clear idea of who your ideal customer is, it will make searching for them on Facebook a LOT easier.

#1. Facebook Graph Search

First of all, you simply go to facebook.com (not now, you distracted person you! after you’re done reading of course).

Now, instead of typing in the name of your ex or your high school crush (we all do it), you’re going to get serious. ‘Cause indeed, you can use Facebook to search for a LOT more than just to spy on so-and-so-who-just-had-a-baby.

Here are some ideas to spark your imagination. You can type in things like:

  • Favorite interests of people who like Blogging.
  • Movies liked by people who like Trainwreck.
  • Pages liked by lawyers who live in Australia.
  • Pages liked by fans of Rihanna and Rita Ora and Nicki Minaj.
  • Groups of people who like giving money to strangers (no results there, unfortunately… bummer! But you can indeed use a “group” search as well).

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In fact, you can get pretty darn specific with this stuff!

For example, you can search for:

Pages liked by people who like Blogging.

Or make it more specific:

Pages liked by women who like Blogging.

Or even more specific:

Pages liked by women over the age of 25 who like Blogging… etc.

Now, on the one hand searching for a specific combination can be SUPER powerful, but on the other hand, you’ll also want to “leave some room”.

What I mean by that is, leave some room to test things out. Maybe you’re dead convinced that your target audience consists of only 18-25-year-old dudes that like Oprah, but the data from your tests might actually tell you otherwise!

So, search around a little bit, and whenever you find pages you think are useful to target, add them to a Google Doc, Evernote, Spreadsheet (or whatever else you trust with your thoughts).

#2. Audience Insights

This is another very powerful tool on Facebook to get to know your target audience a little better. To find it quickly, add this link to your bookmarks: https://www.facebook.com/ads/audience_insights

Here again, you can start with adding an Interest.

For example, if I would type in Tesla Motors, this will show me a lot of information about the people who like this page:

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You can look at:

  • Demographics: and find out how many of them are men vs. women.
  • Page Likes: find out which other pages they like best.
  • Location: find out where most of them live… etc.

And, you can also layer this search query with other options, by adding Education, Relationship Status,  Political Interests and more.

If you’re just getting started, simply looking at the tab Page Likes can already give you enough valuable targeting ideas to add to your list.

#3. Interests Autocomplete

For this option, you’re going to pretend to create your first campaign. We recommend doing this inside the Power Editor as this will give you a lot more flexibility. But, we’ll write more on that in future posts.

Either way, whether you’re inside the Ad Manager or Power Editor, you will see the option to add Interests, which of course is the type of targeting we’re focusing on today.

Now, let’s say you’re selling the newest, most awesome online Yoga membership!

What you could do in the field Interests is simply type in yoga and see what they come up with:

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This can give you some ideas you hadn’t thought of just yet.

And, if you want even more suggestions you just add in some other characters, for example, something like “yoga a” and see what happens:

All of a sudden a bunch of new suggestions pop up.

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Again, just add them to your list of targeting options whenever you see something interesting.

#4. Interests Suggestions

You can also use the Suggestions tab. For example, if your target audience is “people who like Sex And The City” (yep, I’m still watching reruns), you can look at the Suggestions options to see what else it is they like.

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Apparently: Desperate Housewives, Modern Family, and Friends… among others! (I concur…)

Alright, that’s it for now! Using any or several of the above methods should help you create a nice list of Interests to target for your first campaign.

Now what?

After you’ve created your awesome video ad, and have collected a bunch of pages you can target, you’re ready to create your first campaign!

We’ll cover more on how to create that video ad campaign inside the Power Editor VERY soon.

For now, are you ready to start your research or do you have any questions? Or, do you know of any other ninja targeting tricks that you want to share with the community?

Don’t hesitate to leave a comment!

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