One of the most important parts of digital advertising is making sure your ads reach the right people. Your carefully crafted copy and eye-catching assets are ineffective if they aren’t reaching your desired audience.
When it comes to digital advertising strategies, there are a number of targeting strategies you can use when setting up ad campaigns on any platform. Digital advertising offers much more control and the ability to analyse results than traditional print advertising. You can track in great detail how many people have seen and engaged with your ad, clicked through and used your website, and made a purchase.
Whether you’re advertising on Facebook or Google, there are several different ways you can segment your targeting. Did you know you can target someone based on their relationship status? Or their job seniority?
Here is a breakdown of six types of targeting strategies to help your ads reach the right audience.
The basis of all search campaigns, this targets your audience based on the keywords they are searching for. These will usually be words or key phrases people will search when researching topics or potential future purchases of a product or service.
You want to make sure your keywords are relevant to your brand, product or service in both website and ad copy. We’d recommend spending some time on keyword research. Put yourself in your customers’ shoes and think what they may be searching for that’s relevant to your offer. Sometimes it’s obvious, sometimes less so. Free online and ad planning tools can help you see which keywords are the most relevant, the average monthly searches and likely level of competition.
Demographic targeting means you can segment your audience based on key features including age, gender, interests, and language. So, if your main customer base is women aged 30-50 interested in travel, you can set this in your targeting.
Facebook can include features such as relationship status, behaviours, and life events. LinkedIn can target audience attributes such as company names, job seniority and fields of study. You can select job titles, skills as well as a range of interests and traits. It lends itself to effective recruitment and B2B campaigns.
It’s worth noting there are certain instances where targeting is limited on platforms such as Facebook. Special categories allow targeting to remain limited. This helps to protect people against unlawful discrimination as part of the platform’s advertising policies. These categories include credit, employment, housing and special issues, elections, or politics.
Location, location, location. It does what it says on the tin – this targeting method segments your audience based on their location. Categories range from regions to ‘currently in’ or ‘recently in’ a location or travelling in the area.
From counties and cities to towns and postcodes, location targeting can be as specific as you need. Some platforms like Facebook offer the option to set a radius. You can also exclude locations in your targeting.
For example, we recently ran a summer campaign for one of our destination clients to support the local businesses in the area, with segmented targeting towards two key groups – locals and holidaymakers.
Through location targeting, it was possible to have a set of ads curated towards people living in or from the local area. A second set of ads with bespoke messaging and calls to action was aimed at potential day-trippers visiting or about to visit the region. The aim being for them to consider a day out as part of their holiday.
A lookalike audience targets new people who have similar interests, behaviours, and characteristics to your existing audience. You can select an existing custom audience which the platform uses to find new people who share similar qualities. Your ad is then delivered to the audience that ‘look like’ your existing customers.
You can decide how closely you want your new audience to match. How close will depend on a few things such as marketing goals or audience specificity preferences. A wider audience, for example, would help raise brand awareness. A smaller range is better for trying to increase conversions.
For one of our clients, we’re using a lookalike audience using their existing Facebook page followers. We’re targeting new people with similar interests and behaviours for two reasons. As well as reaching a new audience, increasing clicks to the website to help boost bookings.
Remarketing campaigns show your ads to people who have already visited your website or engaged with your brand. Whether someone is considering a purchase or is becoming a repeat customer, remarketing helps brand recall and repeat visits. These clicks are more likely to turn into conversions.
Have you ever been researching or bought something online to find ads for the same brand appearing in your social media feeds and on ad banners while you’re browsing the web.
It’s clear from the data in the remarketing campaigns we run on both Facebook and Google for clients that reaching potential customers at a time when they are considering their options is a highly effective strategy, resulting in significantly higher engagement rates.
Placement and platform targeting
Not only is who you are targeting important but where your advert appears is also crucial to consider. Thinking about who your target audience is will help determine which platform is best to promote your ads. You don’t have to advertise on every platform. Finding the right one for your audience and your goals will be much more effective.
As Facebook and Instagram are both owned by Meta, you can connect your accounts. This means you can set up an ads campaign to run on both platforms using one budget. You can optimise your content to appear in a range of placements, from in-feed posts to stories.
It’s also important to use platform insights and Google Analytics to refine targeting. Organic social media metrics and website analytics indicate who your audiences are and who is already engaging with your brand. It could even reveal a new audience you didn’t know you had. This information can then be used as part of your digital advertising strategy.
Six digital advertising strategies for campaigns
You don’t have to pick just one targeting strategy. Set up multiple ad campaigns each with its own targeting method and unique content to achieve your marketing goals. DCA has a wealth of experience in digital advertising and is proud to be a Google Partner. If you’d like support on your digital marketing strategy, get in touch by contacting us on 01752 858901.