Understanding Facebook Targeting Ads: 6 Easy Steps

Osheen Jain • Last Modified: December 29th, 2022

Using precisely tailored audiences in your ad campaigns will drive traffic to your website, increase CTR, build brand awareness, and achieve other advertising goals. Choosing attractive creatives and crafting the right marketing message is helpful. However, the real challenge can be finding the right people. Choosing the right audience will keep your entire Marketing Strategy on the right path.

That’s why, today, you will understand Facebook Ads’ target audience options. Read on to find more about Facebook’s Targeting Ads strategies and get inspired. 

Table of Contents

Understanding Facebook Targeting Ads

Businesses use Facebook Targeting Ads to attract customers. Facebook Targeting Ads allows them to create a unique audience based on the user’s ideal demographic, location, and interest to advertise the ads to relevant people. You can also use education and income to target ads with Hyper-Personalization. Facebook has more targeting options like location, age, gender, job title, relationships, behavior, and much more. The targeting possibilities are almost limitless. 

We have also written an article on Facebook audience insights which you can have a read for more understanding.

For further information on Facebook Targeting Ads, check out the official website here.

Key Benefits of using Facebook Targeting Ads

A few of the many key benefits of Facebook Targeting Ads are:

1) Allows Micro-Targeting your Audience

Facebook allows Marketers to Target Audiences based on behavior, interest, age range, demographics, location, connections, or languages through Facebook Targeting Ads. In addition, you can also target your Competitor’s Audience. You can combine your Target Audiences to create a Custom Audience to have better conversions. This ensures that your ads are shown to Facebook users who are likely to buy from you. 

2) Offers Robust Analytics

Facebook has an amazing Report and Analytics tool that helps you track Facebook Targeting Ads, Ad performance, and optimize future Ads. You won’t have to assume information about Conversion Rates or other Social Metrics. Everything is neatly laid out within the Ads Manager. You can find reports about Weekly Reach, Page Engagement, Page Likes, and Best-Performing Posts. It does not end there. You can also gain insights about Conversion, Clicks, and Sales and can use this data to adjust your Facebook Targeting Ads. 

3) Easily Find New Leads

The Facebook lookalike Audiences option allows you to attract people who are fast converting Audiences. With this feature, you can use Facebook to find similar people like your Custom Audience who are likely to purchase from you. 

4) Increase Conversions Dramatically with Facebook Pixel

Facebook Pixel is a unique code to track User Behavior on your website. You can easily plug the code into the backend of your website. The code allows you to target visitors based on their behaviors on your website. With Facebook pixels, you can retarget users who visited your website or left an abandoned cart. You can also target users who have recently viewed your pricing page.

5) Add a Custom Call-to-Action Button.

One of the essential parts of digital ads is a CTA or a call to action button. It takes an Audience to the desired destination. CTA is compelling because it tells your visitors what to do next if interested in your company and product. It makes a huge difference in your ad’s performance. You can lead users to your website or include buttons like Book Now, Sign Up, Apply Now, Download, Contact Us, and Learn More.

6) Encourage customer loyalty

Facebook pages allow businesses to make their followers feel a part of their community. It is a great method for businesses to interact directly with their customers while also building brand image and enhancing customer loyalty. Brands get opportunities to Engage with their Audience, Leading to Growth, Sales, and a Higher Retention Rate

Understanding Facebook Targeting Ads Options

  • Demographics: You can choose your audience based on age, education, job title, gender, and more.
  • Interests: You can divide groups into several categories depending on their diverse interests, such as hobbies and entertainment choices, depending on their diverse interests. These distinct groups will help you make data-driven decisions and improve your message, allowing you to connect with your customers and target audience in meaningful ways. 
  • Behaviors: Facebook Target Ads should be based on Consumer Behaviors such as past purchases and device usage.
  • Connections: Include people associated with your Facebook Page or event, or exclude them while finding new audiences.

Understanding Facebook Audience Selection

Facebook Targeting Ads - Audiences
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Facebook Audiences are pools of people who will see your ad on their walls and stories. You can Create or Edit Audiences in the Audiences section of your Ads Manager. Facebook offers four Audience selection options:

1) Core Audience

With the Facebook Core Audience option, you can create rules to decide who is targeted with your Ads. You can adjust, broaden, or fine-tune your target audience based on parameters like demographics, behavior, connection, and interests. For example, if you owned a fast-food truck on a university campus, you could use locations in core audiences to target students who commute to campus every day. You can also target international students who speak other languages and teachers who like coffee.

A saved Audience, also known as a Core Audience, can be used to explore the market, gather data to create more advanced campaigns, and experiment with Facebook Targeting Ads options. Furthermore, you can use the Core Audience as a target group for creating Lookalike Audiences. You’ll have many opportunities to mix your audience for creating a refined target audience. So, having a well-tailored core audience can be extremely helpful. 

2) Custom Audience

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A Custom Audience is an advanced feature on Facebook that allows Marketers to refine existing contacts to create a new Audience that matches their campaign objective. For example, if you want to offer a free trial for your services, there is no reason to include your existing customer base in that audience. Alternatively, if you are offering a discount for renewal, you have to exclude new users. You can upload your current customer list to Facebook and create a Custom Audience based on their specific actions on your page, game, or app. 

This feature also allows you to target customers with a specific job role, people who live in a particular zip code or make a minimum amount of money per year. You can use insights from previous campaigns and use them to create a refined Custom Audience. 

You can also create a custom audience based on people who have:

  • Watched your stories or videos on Facebook and/or Instagram.
  • Opened a form in one of your lead generation ads.
  • Completed a form from your ad campaign.
  • Visited/Interacted with your Instagram professional account or posts.
  • Shown interest in your events on Facebook.
  • Interactor follows your Facebook Page. 

3) Lookalike Audiences

Facebook Targeting Ads - lookalike audience
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Once you have a Custom Audience strategy, you can use it to expand your fan base by mirroring it and creating a Lookalike Audience. Lookalikes allow you to reach new people that resemble your existing Custom Audience. Thus, if you don’t have a big Facebook following or an extensive email list, you can still create a Lookalike Audience based on your Custom Audience.

You can optimize Lookalike Audiences between similarity and reach. Facebook will find your top 1% of users with similar traits in your chosen location at the most similar level. As you move towards optimizing for reach, Facebook will display your ads to the top 10% of users likely to be a Target Audience. 

4) Special Ad Audience 

The fourth and last option is special because you can only advertise employment, credit, and housing. It has a corresponding mechanism to that of the Lookalike Audience. You’ll have to select data sources to create a Custom Audience so that Facebook can find people who have similar Interests and Behaviors

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Key Strategies for Facebook Targeting Ads 

These five Facebook Targeting Ads strategies will help you lower CPC and boost ad conversions:

1) Use Custom Audiences for Remarketing

Remarketing is a powerful targeting strategy that helps brands to get back customers who have expressed interest in their products. With the Facebook Custom Audiences targeting option, you can show your ads to people looking at sales, pricing, particular product pages, or people who have recently viewed your website. You also have the option to exclude recent buyers because they might not convert again soon.

2) Get Ultra-Precise with Layered Targeting or Narrow Further

One of the most powerful features of Facebook Targeting Ads is the layer targeting option that allows you to create your audience to be more precise with one layer on top of another. You can use a combination of various demographics, behavior, and geolocation data to reduce your audience group into as small as one person. This gives you the ability to reach out to smaller audiences with a combination of data points. 

For example, a moving company that is running a special promotion for senior citizens can target people who have recently (one month) purchased a property. Further, you can layer this audience group with the age range of 60 years or older in their serviceable location. Or, a company selling products for newborn babies can target new parents and reach them with soothing effects during those sleepless nights. You can tailor your message and speak directly to the people for whom you have created the solution. 

3) Try Combining Two Unique Audiences

When super-precise targeting is not the right solution for your brand or a product you are trying to push, you should switch to broad targeting. If you are not particular about the behavior or demographic of the audience you want to target, you can capture users from a broader category. You can do this by combining two unique audiences in your custom audience. With this method, you can target two niches and expose your brand to a bigger market. 

4) Target your Competitors’ Fans 

Facebook Audience Insights gives you a better understanding of Facebook users that might like your product or services. You can also attract your competitors’ followers. To do so, go to the Audience Insight Dashboard and select everyone on Facebook. Click on the Target Audience and choose the basic demographics, location, and interests of the audience you want to target. Find out the pages that they already follow by clicking Pages Likes. Now click on the create audience tab again and start looking for the most liked pages in the interest box. You can also directly choose your competitor’s Facebook Page and target users that already engage with them.

5) Get Creative with Life Events Targeting

Some businesses focus on selling to people that are experiencing major life events. Facebook Targeting Ads has almost every conceivable targeting option for life events such as being newly engaged, losing a loved one, purchasing a new apartment, etc. This option allows businesses to focus their Marketing Campaigns on targeting people at specific intervals in their life. For example, jewelry stores will be interested in showing their ads to people celebrating their 1st anniversary or a silver or golden jubilee. 

6) Targeting Users who Sent you a Message

One of the most overlooked targeting options is reaching out to customers who communicate with your brand via Facebook Messenger. This is an amazing opportunity to segment people who reached out with a complaint or question regarding your products or services.

Creating Facebook Targeting Ads in Ads Manager

The steps below are required to create Facebook Targeting Ads in Ads Manager:

Step 1: Create Facebook Ads Manager Account

The first step in establishing Facebook Targeting Ads is signing up to Facebook Ads Manager. Facebook’s Ad Manager is an advanced Dashboard that allows users to run Ads and get an overview of all their campaigns. You’ll need a Facebook Business Page before creating an ad with Ads manager because you can’t run ads through personal profiles. 

Step 2: Create an Ad through Facebook’s Ads Manager

Unless you’ve already created an ad with Ads Manager for your Facebook page, the Dashboard will be empty. To create a new ad set, campaign, or ad through the Facebook Ad Manager, click the “Create” button. 

Facebook Targeting Ads - step 2
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Step 3: Choose an Objective

Facebook’s Ads Manager will prompt you to choose an objective from one of the 11 options to choose from. You’ll have a list that includes everything from getting installs of your app, to general brand awareness, to increasing traffic to your online store. Choose the most relevant objective to give Facebook a better idea of the goals you want to achieve with this campaign. 

Step 4: Choose your Audience

The next step is to configure your target audience. You can start with a core audience and keep experimenting with multiple targeting options to refine the audience that fits your goals. 

Facebook Targeting Ads - step 4
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Step 5: Set your Budget

You can either set a lifetime budget or a daily budget. A daily budget option is for brands that want the ad to run continuously throughout the day. Facebook will pace your spending per day. The lifetime budget option is for brands looking to run your ad for a specified length of time. In this, Facebook will pace your spending over the time period you set for the ad to run.

Facebook Targeting Ads - step 5
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Step 6: Create your Ad

In the last step, you can design your ad. You can either display a single image ad or a multi-image ad with three to five scrolling images. 


Don’t underestimate Facebook Targeting Ads just because of the price tag. The right targeting can take your business to new heights. Using Ads Manager and running successful ads is a learning curve, and you can’t expect results overnight. When strategizing your Facebook Targeting Ads, check all of our ideas and tips to see how they might fit your various audiences and market segments. In case you want to export Data from Facebook Targeting Ads into your desired Database/destination, then Hevo Data is the right choice for you! 

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