How to Reach Your Ideal Audience with Facebook's New Flex Targeting

How to Reach Your Ideal Audience with Facebook's New Flex Targeting (Source: Wiki, Pexels, Pixabay)

Facebook Ads was already an extremely powerful tool for marketers; and with its newest Power Editor feature, Flex marketing, it just became more effective than ever.

With Facebook’s advertising assets – including custom and lookalike audiences, as well as targeted remarketing – inbound marketers can build specific audience lists to better reach and pitch to their ideal audience. That is, the users most likely to convert into clients with the right push.

With the addition of “Flex And-Or Exclusion” targeting, finding your perfect user is now easier than ever. Here’s what you need to know.

What is Flex And-Or Exclusion Targeting?

At its core, this feature allows you to find a more detailed and specifically-targeted audience than ever before on Facebook by including people who match more than one demographic, interest, or behavior or, conversely, by excluding certain demographics, interests, or behaviors.

Facebook previously didn’t allow “and” statements – when any of us set up targets based on interests, demographics, or behaviors, we were choosing to target everyone who fit into any of those qualifications. Naturally, this led to a very broad audience base, full of people who weren’t necessarily going to turn into users.

With Flex targeting, we can get more specific. Facebook has a handy primer on its site. In its example, the marketer moves from broad strokes (American men, ages 15-35) to more detailed requirements (they MUST use an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus and MUST have an interest in action games). With exclusions added on top of that (they MUST NOT have a 2G connection), the marketer is now making sure their ad is reaching the optimal client for their product.

How Can I Put Flex Targeting to Work for Me?

Our colleagues at DigitalMarketer have come up with a handy trick called the “But No One Else Would” test, and it’s a great mentality to take as you start your first forays into highly specific Flex targeting.

Essentially, the “But No One Else Would” mindset forces you to do your research and really think about your audience. Ask yourself: Who is so invested in the world of your product that they’re hanging out and purchasing it online? Think about who the major figures and brands are in your niche; consider what sites and periodicals your customers are reading, what events they attend, where they’re living.

Above all, it’s important to consider what is specifically unique about your ideal user. What are they doing or discussing online that no one else would?

Let’s try an example! We here at Geek love Star Wars. Suppose we were trying to market for a client that produced a specific robotics toy that’s still a little too niche for the most casual space opera fan. Whereas before we could only include or exclude Star Wars, we can now hone in, targeting people who are interested in Star Wars and, say, C3PO, while also limiting our potential audience based around additional factors, such as age or location. 

We’re now accessing parts of a demographic who know and care about something unique – a single droid – that no one else would. That’s going to leave us with an audience that’s more hyper-specific and, consequently, more sales-qualified and likely to engage with our client’s unique offering.

Sound easy? Sound hard? Either way, we would love to help you get started.

Whether you’re looking to add targeted marketing to your already-running campaign or just dip your toes into social media advertising for the first time, Geek is here to help! Our dedicated team is here and happy to help with all of your digital marketing, technology, and online reputation management needs. Drop us a line today!

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Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).