Facebook’s New Targeting Options – Dilemma or Boon?
February 22, 2014
There has been a lot of criticism lately, about the way Facebook has been dealing with its ads. Having said that Facebook is one of the platforms where its user strength can be leveraged to gain visibility, footfalls and conversions; there has been a lot of spamming happening alongside as well. Simply put, advertisers being deprived of targeting choices, end up getting misleading and spammy likes.
This has lead to Facebook introducing a new set of targeting features that will help advertisers tailor their audience, with higher accuracy. Besides, they will also aid in controlling which users can view which ads. As per the launch, targeting can now be done on the basis of:
While there were location-based targeting features on Facebook earlier too, the filter was not fine tuned enough. The new filtering controls have been designed in a way such that advertisers have more control on who is viewing their ads. The new filter options are country and state; country and city; state and city and state and ZIP Code (for US only).
Filters like age groups, gender, etc. are already in use. However, Facebook has now added filters with regard to education types; designation or job tiles; personal life changes. The latter has been a new addition which aims to target ads to people based on their relationship status like ‘Engaged’; ‘In a Relationship’ or ‘Married’. This would of course be dependent on the users updating their relationship status (if at all).
The interest areas can be targeted as well. For instance, if a new set of fiction books have just arrived at your store and you want to get the information across you could well target the ‘Fiction Readers’ through these advanced filtering options.
Behavior advertising will be essentially done through Facebook’s Partner Categories, where the targeting will be based on offline activities like the kind of websites frequented, the kind of purchases made and the devices used by the Facebook users.
[See: How can Techmagnate's Facebook marketing service help your business to grow?]
These new set of filters may have their share of advantages, but there are areas of grey as well. For instance, the filters based on ‘job titles’ and ‘relationship status’ are completely dependent on users updating their profiles as well as the honesty involved therein, making them quite vulnerable in terms of their effectiveness. Now this may be a concern for advertisers having said that considerable amounts of money go into ads such as these and how easy it is to fake on social media platforms.
However, the changes are being looked forward to, by most Facebook advertisers, as means to reach out to a more sensitive and responsive audience. In fact this may also encourage those who have either given up on, or not opted at all; for giving it a shot.
While this may bring forward quite a few options for Facebook advertisers, the effectiveness question still remains. How effective will these filters be? Will they yield better reach or just reduce the audience size? Will filtering impact conversions negatively?
What are your thoughts on the new filter options launched by Facebook? Do you think they make for a good opportunity or is it just another brain drain? Share your takes with us.