It's a practice that puts your ads in front of the people who are most interested in what you have to say. It works for businesses large and small. It allows you to focus on location, age, gender, interests, demographics, behaviors, connections or a combination of them all.
And it just got better.
Several updates rolled out earlier this summer that do the seemingly impossible: give you the power to improve custom audience creation.
For as long as ad targeting has been possible, companies have created audiences based on four types of engagement with their brands:
Facebook videos, which are incredibly popular
Lead forms, which allow you to collect prospects information from mobile ads
Canvases, which are instant ads that use texts, images and videos
Facebook pages, which is the bread and butter of Facebook advertising.
Until now, these were the types of engagements on which custom audiences were built.
But not anymore.
Now, when you begin the process of creating a custom audience based on engagement, you will also be able to create custom audiences based on the people who have viewed your videos or filled out lead forms on Instagram.
That's right: Instagram.
This is a major improvement to the ad targeting process--and a big, big deal for marketing professionals. Before now, marketers could not create custom lists populated by people who engaged with brands on Instagram.
How big of deal is this? Well, it makes it easier than ever for companies to target their brands towards Instagram's 400 million users.
See? This change has the potential to be a big, big deal for companies. But this isn't the only change Facebook has made; there are actually multiple improvements you need to know about.
But wait... there's more!
As if the ability for custom audience creation through Instagram isn't enough, Facebook has gone even further with enhancements to ad targeting by:
Allowing a single audience to include engagements with multiple forms
Providing you with the option to include or exclude engagement with specific forms
Making it possible for you to create audiences based on everyone who engaged with your brand on Instagram, anyone who visited your business profile on Instagram, people who have sent messages to your business on Instagram and people who have saved any post or ad on Instagram.
This is all powerful stuff when it comes to ensuring your ads are reaching the right people in the right places with the right messages (which is what ad targeting is all about).
But it only works if you let it.
Making the most of ad targeting updates
All of these improvements to the ad targeting process are only going to help you as much as you let them. That means creating or improving a presence on Instagram, getting active on the platform and making sure you are making the most of all of the new options.
These are big changes--but how big depends on you.