Targeting your ideal audience is one of the most important aspects of any ad campaign you need to get right if you want to generate qualified leads from Social or Paid Search ads. Unfortunately, it’s also one common area that many business owners often get wrong, causing them to lose hundreds, and in many instances, thousands of dollars on ads that have poor conversions.

How do you think an ad that sells dog food will perform if it is targeted at someone who doesn’t even like or own a dog?? There is ONLY one answer; the ad will suffer low engagements and poor conversions. This is because there is no emotional connection between the ad content and the audience.

In this post, you will learn 7 tested and proven advanced audience ad targeting strategies that will help you reach your ideal audience, attract laser-targeted leads and generate more sales for your business.  

Ready? Okay, let’s get started!

What Is Audience Ad Targeting?

Data-driven audience ad targeting allows you to target your audience based on who they are, their interests and habits, where they’re spending time online, and how they interact with your business. Using the right tactics, you can reach people who are interested in your product or service with the right messaging that will make them engage with your offer.

Audience targeting starts with you first defining your audience and campaign goals. For example, you need to define who your ideal customers are, based on parameters such as demographics, online behavior, purchase history, loyalty and repeat purchases. Additionally, you want to be clear about the goals you seek to achieve with a particular campaign or ad groups.

Getting The Right Data For Effective Audience Targeting

You can use audience ad targeting or programmatic ad platforms  such as Neustar, Zeta Programmatic or Lotame to gather key information about your audience. These platforms track customer behavior online with cookies and provide their users with comprehensive data that helps them understand how to connect with their target audience. The data gathered at this stage can help determine the right channel to spend your ad dollars, and optimize your campaign for optimum results and high return on investment (ROI).

Advanced Audience Ad Targeting Strategies For Your Next Campaign

Audience targeting strategies often vary from one advertising platform to another. But regardless of whether you’re advertising on Facebook or Google, mastering the following tactics can help you reach and connect with the right audience. When your audience ad targeting and creatives are on point, attracting qualified leads becomes a walk in the park.

1. Leverage Multiple Targeting Options On Google Adwords

Google allows you to create your ads based on campaign and audience types. Based on campaign types, you can choose between display, search or video ads. Each of these categories offers you a wide range of targeting options. For example, you can target  people that have visited your website or app, people shopping for your kind of product or service, or fans of a specific genre of music. Google will then show your ad to people who fall within the parameters you’ve set.

You can target an audience based on what they’re passionate about, their habits, and interest by choosing an affinity audience type. The Detailed demographics options provide information about your target audience’s demographic data such as their age, country, city or language while the in-market audience feature lets you target consumers based on their recent purchase intent. From the reports, you can build different ad groups around each of your audience types and create a creative that resonates with them.

2. Use Facebook Custom Audience and Retargeting

Facebook is the largest social media platform with the widest selection of options that allow you to target, reach, and engage your current and prospective customers. Facebook allows you to target your audience based on their interests, location, and language.

Using personalized data, Facebook ensures that only users whose interests and preferences match your targeting parameters are shown your ads. This helps to maximize your ad spend and ensures that only people who are likely going to convert on your offer, actually see your ad.

In addition, you can scoop relevant data by looking at click-through rates, cost-per-clicks and actual conversion history to determine which audience is the most interested in your offer and how much money it will cost to reach them. This is a cost-effective way to do market analysis

3. Use Facebook’s Lookalike Audience

A Lookalike Audience simply refers to audiences that resemble your custom audience. Before creating a lookalike audience, you want to make sure that you have a good custom audience strategy. Doing this helps you target the right people who are likely to show interest in your offer. The Lookalike Audience feature allows you to expand your reach, while targeting people with highly specific profiles that align with your ideal customer avatar.

The first step to creating a lookalike audience is determining which audience you want to replicate and expand upon. Once you’ve done that, you can import their data and Facebook will find you the top 1 percent of users that mirror similar traits, behavior, and share the same locations with your original audience.

4. Implement Event Tracking On Your Website

Event tracking offers you better insights and understanding of your target audience and how they interact with your website. Both Google and Facebook allow you to track and collect important data, including audience insights that you can use to refine your targeting and make improved advertising decisions.

You can track events using a tracking URL. A tracking URL is a standard page URL from your website with a tracking token added to it. When someone clicks on the tracking URL, a signal is sent to your ad tracking tool, which contains useful data such as the location of the user and their activity on your website.

If you’re running multiple ads on a single website, you can use the tracking URLs to determine which of the ads is performing best in terms of clicks, conversion or sales. Additionally, you will receive data that shows how much you’re spending per lead and your overall conversion rate.

Event tracking enables you to ID and set attribution models, which helps you optimize your messaging, and make your customer journey down into the sales funnel as frictionless and painless as possible.

5. Use Google’s Remarketing Tool

Remarketing is a way of reconnecting with people who have already engaged with your company, including past visitors to your website, mobile app or video views. This also includes prospective customers who have given you their contact information.

Google’s Remarketing function allows you to target high-intent groups, while they are searching for related terms rather than dogging them around the web with irrelevant content. You can get a comprehensive overview of the data to prioritize in Google Ads Editor. This feature allows you to download and view your existing audiences.

Depending on your campaign type, you can target remarketing lists, life events, interest categories and custom combination lists. You can also A/B test and create ‘ad clusters’ to compare which campaigns are driving the highest conversions.

6. Prioritize Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the quality of your website to increase visibility, improve rankings and grow your organic traffic on search engines like Google, Yahoo, and Bing. SEO is one of the most effective ways to target your audience and serve them with the most relevant content that addresses their search intent. SEO allows you to bring your message right in front of your audience when they are searching for it.

Central to your SEO efforts is content relevancy. Before you create and publish any piece of content on your website, you need to conduct proper keyword research. Your customers can easily find you on search engines like Google, Bing or Yahoo when your content is optimized for relevant keywords.

Please note that creating content around relevant keywords is NOT enough to hit the top positions on a competitive search engine like Google. Although search engines (like Google) regularly update their ranking algorithms, important ranking factors also include user-experience of your website, page load speed and external backlinks from relevant and authority websites. If your business ranks high on Google for relevant terms, you are literally going to be enjoying FREE organic traffic to your website, which can lead to free conversions.

7. Add Chatbots To Your Strategy

Consistent advancement in machine learning has paved more ways for business owners to refine their targeting methods. Today, many businesses integrate chatbots on their website to improve the user experience of their visitors.

Web visitors can easily interact with chatbots to get answers or clarifications on different issues. But beyond that, chatbots can also help you determine if the visitors are in your target audience. The bots can engage and re-engage your audience, thereby providing important insights about the visitors’ activities on your site.

Additionally, chatbots are capable of capturing the most important piece of information about your users via a Conversational User Interface (GUI). This doesn’t only provide the demographic information of your customers, but more importantly, their interests and preferences which are essential insights for ad targeting.

Final Thoughts

If you want to get the highest ROI from your marketing efforts then these advanced audience ad targeting strategies must be integrated into your campaigns. Getting the right data can make a big difference in your audience targeting and ultimately help you attract laser-targeted and highly qualified leads.

Let your next campaign be data-driven.