How to get the most out of your Facebook Ad Marketing

Did you know with Facebook, you can set up location ad targeting for a specific address.You can then refine that audience to people who live in, have recently been to or are traveling in that area.

It is called: Advanced Location Targeting

With Facebook ads, you can already target users based on their country, state and city. This is useful if you’re a local business and you want to target users in a particular city, like Seattle, rather than show your content to the entire state of Washington.

location targeting in facebook

You can target ads to serve to Facebook users in a geographic location.

To bolster their location targeting, Facebook now lets you target users based on a specific address. In the Locations field, you can enter a physical address or geographic location and target users who are around that area.

Suppose that you want people to visit your bakery in Seattle. Simply type the address into your ad targeting and choose to target people who are in and around the business.

adding a location to targeting

Add relevant locations to your targeting.

You might be a little skeptical about targeting people who are “around the area.” After all, someone could just be passing through or working in the area for the day.

For more precise targeting, click the Everyone in This Location drop-down menu and choose from any of these targeting options:

  • Everyone in This Location (default)
  • People Who Live in This Location
  • People Recently in This Location
  • People Traveling in This Location

For a bakery, it makes the most sense to target “people who live in this location” because they’re more likely to become repeat customers.

Here are some ways advanced location targeting might benefit your business.

Attract Walk-In Customers

With a brick-and-mortar business such as a café, bakery, hotel, gym or retail store, you’re looking to drive foot traffic. So targeting your Facebook ads to people in your city or state would be ineffective because you’d be casting too wide a net.

The better option is to use extended location targeting. Send a quick message to people who are in and around the area to let them know that your business is just a few minutes away.

target area based on business location

Use location targeting to reach people who are near your business.

If you add contextual cues to your messaging, you can make an emotional connection with people to drive slightly higher interaction. For example, if you own a café, you might try these contextual cues to drive traffic:

  • On a warm sunny day, ask people to stop by your store for ice cream or other refreshment.
  • On a rainy day, ask people to take shelter where you are and enjoy a hot cup of coffee.
  • A few hours before lunchtime, send a targeted message to people promoting your lunch special and asking them to stop by to eat.

Drive Purchases During Sales Events

If you’re planning to have a sale or make a push for revenue during a specific time period, you’re likely committing advertising dollars to spread awareness and build anticipation for the event.

That’s a great way to let people know about your upcoming event. But during the sale itself, you don’t want to cast a wide net to reach as many people as possible. Instead,target only the people who are near your location.

timeline of sale cycle

During the sale, target your ads to drive foot traffic.

During the sale period, convey urgency to nearby customers. If you have a retail store, here are a few ways you might do that:

  • Send a targeted message to people around your store, letting them know that the sale is happening now and it’s nearby.
  • If you’re managing a chain of stores, set up customized messages for each location. Talk about special deals that may not be available elsewhere.
  • Send a picture of people shopping in the store during the sale.

By following this strategy during a sale period or product launch, you can more effectively optimize your ad spend.

How to optimize your ad spend.

Identify Profitable Age Groups and Genders

Not all age groups and genders perform the same. You may discover that you’re wasting your money on unprofitable age categories or that you’re missing opportunities by not dedicating enough budget to a gender that is generating the majority of sales for a given target method.

The best way to analyze age group and gender performance is to log into your ad manager and click on Reports.

facebook reports

Click the Reports option.

On the report page, set up the date range you want to analyze. Then click on Customize Columns to decide what values to report on. Under Breakdown, select Age, Gender or Age and Gender, as shown below.

facebook reports filters

Select Age, Gender or Age and Gender to filter your report.

You can make relevant strategic decisions based on the insights you collect in this report. Check it out on your account now.

Test Lookalike Audiences

A lookalike audience is a list of users whose characteristics are similar to users of a website custom audience. This opens up a lot of opportunities, such as advertising to users similar to those who already visited your website, advertising to users similar to those who visited a specific page or advertising to users similar to the ones who already converted on your site.

To create a lookalike audience, log into your advertising manager and click Audiences. Once you enter your Audiences page, click on Create Audience and select Lookalike Audience from the drop-down menu, as shown here.

facebook audience options

Select this option to create a Lookalike Audience.

Next, select the source audience of your lookalike audience and the target country. Then pick an audience size—the smaller the size you select, the more targeted it will be.

facebook country targeting

Select the target country and audience size.

Target an Email List

Facebook allows you to create a custom advertising audience based on email lists. All you have to do is to create a .csv or .txt file that includes one email per row and excludes any other data.

Once you have that file, click Audiences, then click Create Audience and select Custom Audience from the drop-down menu.

Next, click on Customer List, as shown below. From here, it’s easy to upload your list.

facebook audience options

Click Customer List and then upload your email list.

Keep in mind that you can also upload a list of phone numbers and then target those people in Facebook ads. The process is basically the same as the one I just described. Also, you have the option to create a lookalike audience of your newly created customer list.

Test Bidding Strategies

Bidding strategies significantly influence the success of Facebook ads.

The three main categories for bidding are cost per click, cost per thousand impressions and conversion optimizer (which requires the installation of a conversion code).

Test different bidding methods to find out what reduces the cost per conversion but still gets enough volume. I recommend starting with CPC and conversion optimizer.

You can set up your bidding method at the Ad Set level in the Optimization and Pricing section, shown here.

facebook ad bid options

Select a bid type from this menu.

Whenever you bid per click or use the conversion optimizer, you can decide your maximum cost per click or target cost per acquisition, or let Facebook pick a value for you.

facebook ad pricing options

Set the pricing for your ad.

Schedule Ads

Facebook allows you to segment your ads by days and hours. This option is available only with a lifetime budget and not with the daily budget option. This prerequisite is the reason why most businesses still don’t use this feature.

Lifetime budget refers to the total budget of an ad set and technically does not have a daily limit. If the campaign doesn’t have a reliable performance pattern that has been proven successful over time, this is not the right setting for you.

If you decide to use day and hour parting, you can set it up in the Budget and Schedule section of the ad set, as shown here.

facebook ad scheduling options

Install a Conversion Pixel

This is an obvious tip, but surprisingly many businesses neglect to install conversion pixels.

To create a conversion pixel, log into your ad manager and click on Conversion Tracking.

facebook ad conversion tracking

Click on Conversion Tracking to create a conversion pixel.

On the next page that appears, click the green Create Pixel button in the upper right part of the screen.

facebook conversion tracking button

Click the Create Pixel button.

Follow the guided setup to finish creating your conversion pixel. Once you receive the code, make sure you install the code in the footer of your thank-you page.

Now you can better track the results of your marketing efforts on Facebook.

Target by Behaviors

Many businesses use Facebook ads to target interests exclusively. However, keep in mind that targeting behaviors pays off more often than not.

Examples of behaviors you can target on Facebook are Training and Publications (people who buy items relating to business training and publications), Console Gamers and Primary Browser: Internet Explorer (people who primarily connect to Facebook using Internet Explorer).

To target behaviors, you need to select them in the ad set menu either in the live account or in Power Editor, as shown below.

existing facebook ad behavior targeting

Select the behaviors you want to target.

Create separate ad sets for each behavior topic similarly to what you saw earlier for interests.

Target by Income

Some businesses sell products that are more expensive than their competitors’ or simply target the richest portion of the population. Facebook can be a gold mine for these businesses because you can target people based on their annual income.

To target by income, you need to go into the live account or Power Editor and enter the settings of your ad set. Click on More Demographics and then click on Income to select your desired income target, as shown below.

facebook ad income targeting

Select the income range you want to target.

As you can see in the screenshot on the left, there are many other targeting options you can use. Test the ones that make sense for your business and remember to keep your ad set structure as segmented as possible.

Build Loyalty and Advocacy

Unless you’re in the central business district of a large city, your business is likely located in an area that people call home. Most people are inherently proud of their neighborhoods, and where they live is significant to them.

arbor crossfit location mention facebook update

Use location targeting to promote things happening in your neighborhood.

Here are some ways you can use location targeting to make an emotional connection and drive loyalty:

  • Talk about aspects of the neighborhood that you’re proud of.
  • Post pictures of well-known people in the neighborhood interacting with you. Think of them as influencers who lend authenticity to your brand.
  • Portray your business as part of the community.
  • Showcase testimonials from people talking about why they do business with you.

When making an emotional connection, it’s important to be authentic. Otherwise, your actions could have a negative impact on your business.

Leverage Traffic From Local Landmarks

Every city has popular landmarks that it’s famous for. These landmarks are where you can expect people to engage in a lot of social chatter and take lots of photographs.

There’s a huge opportunity here for your business to tap into. With location targeting, create an association between popular landmarks and your business. Target people who are near those locations and deliver messages to them in real time. Talk about the location they’re visiting and link it back to your business.

landmarks mapped in new york

Identify popular landmarks near your business.

It’s helpful to create a list of popular spots and mark them on a map like the one above. The map is a visual reminder of where you’re driving these associations and helps you come up with the messaging for your ads.

Here are some potential ways to make these connections:

  • Talk about the similarity in values between the landmark the user is visiting and your business.
  • Tell people they can receive a discount at your business if they present a picture of this landmark.
  • Serve up an interesting fact about the landmark to add something to the customer’s experience.

Overall thoughts:

Make sure the number of people you’re targeting isn’t too large or too small. If you’re targeting a densely populated area, it’s understandable that your ad will be seen by a large number of people. However, if you’re targeting a sparsely populated area and your ad is still being served to 100,000 people, reduce your target radius and interest categories.


If you would like to talk to me about how we can use these ways to market  your business, email me your thoughts and questions