Paid social is awesome. While many will balk at the idea of paying to get your message seen, the ability of paid social to reach people outside your own network, and target the specific people you’re looking for, can’t be matched with organic alone. Far from saying organic doesn’t matter, paid offers a HUGE new audience for your social solicitation.
One of the great advantages that paid offers over organic is the ability to target. Rather than simply show your message to all of your followers, targeting options allow you to pick who sees your post based on numerous factors. You can target interests such as cooking, boating, or technology. Targeting allows you to pick age groups, sex, geographic location and more. Remarketing even allows you to show ads to people that have visited your website in the past, in order to follow up with more information that may lead them to return or to a sale.
There are countless ways you can use targeting to get your social posts in front of the people you want. Today, we’ll take a look at some of the fun ways you can use targeting to hit the nail on the head.
Tweeting At Tailored Audiences
Twitter Tailored Audiences allow you to build lists of people you want to target. These lists can be comprised of email addresses from your mailing list, Twitter handles from those following you or your competitors, and phone numbers. You can also target people that have visited your website or used your app.
While these lists do have to contain a minimum of 500 users (no targeting the 30 or so people at a startup, I’ve tried), they allow you to get your message in front of people you already have had some type of interaction with, which increases the chances of success. You can also use these audiences along with the other targeting options to really hit specific people. Twitter also allows you to exclude tailored audiences. This allows you to remove those already on your email list from your targeting for example.
Tailored Audiences allow you to zero in on very specific groups. They’re a great way to take your targeting beyond the basic keywords, interests, and behaviors.
Targeting LinkedIn Legions
Beyond the standard Location, Companies, and Job Title options on LinkedIn, targeting can get even more accurate. Want females that are 25-34, went to school at Harvard, have a Masters of Law, that work at Google in North America? You can do it with the options LinkedIn provides. As you can see, there are < 1,000 people that meet that criteria (LinkedIn recommends an audience of 60,000 – 600,000 members for most ads).
LinkedIn does require a minimum custom audience size of 100 people. This means you aren’t quite going to be able to target just the CEO of a specific company with your ads, but you can certainly have only upper management see it.
LinkedIn also offers custom audiences when posting normal organic updates too. These allow you to narrow down which of your followers see your posts based on their company size, industry, function, seniority and more. These are great for big companies that want to post a lot of updates, without overwhelming their following with content they’re not interested in. For smaller companies with only a couple thousand followers, these options may not be as useful, as targeting will significantly decrease the number of people eligible to see your updates.
With 347 million LinkedIn members, you can cut and dice the audience in all kinds of ways to get seen by the people most likely to help you succeed.
Facebook offers some of the best targeting around. It certainly helps that users share every detail of their life with the site. This means you can target based on a ton of different data points. Want to target people who are married and just got a new job? How about those recently married and just bought a house, and they also live in Washington and work for Amazon? Facebook targeting allows it (there are fewer than 1,000 people that meet those requirements, if you’re wondering). You can add countless filters to your Facebook targeting options to really narrow things to the people you want to hit.
Lookalike Audiences give another option to further expand your audiences once you’ve seen success with your targeting. After you’ve gotten good results from your current targeting, you may find that you don’t want to keep hitting the same people over and over again. Using Lookalike Audiences, Facebook is able to automatically identify people that are similar fits to those you’ve identified. This is a great way to expand your audience with ease.
The customization of your paid audience on Facebook can’t be beat. Through applying numerous filters to the billions of members on the site, you can create very specific ad audiences that are just the people to respond to your promoted posts.
Paid Is Worth The Price
Paid social ads offer the ability to reach far more than those that are following you already and targeting that can pick your prime viewers out of a crowd of billions. By using targeting, we can make sure our ads are seen by the right people and increase the success we see with social.