Did you know that most people who use Facebook advertising are shooting themselves in the foot? Many businesses are using underperforming or suboptimal tactics on Facebook, then wondering why it’s not paying off for them.
If you’re a bigger company, some suboptimal ad spend for a while won’t hurt you as badly, because you’ve got more money to work with. But for bootstrapped entrepreneurs, every penny counts—and you need to make sure you’re making the most of your resources.
One way you can take advantage of the resources you have is by leveraging Facebook’s Custom Audiences tool. It’s a powerful ad targeting platform that you’re probably not utilizing as much as you could—and when you unlock its potential, you can see killer returns on minor money.
That’s something everyone wants, not just bootstrapped entrepreneurs. But it’s especially critical for you, because it can allow you to hit your ideal audience. It can take up to eighteen touches on average to make sure a prospect converts.
How can you use Custom Audiences to accomplish that?
1) Upload Your Email List
If you’re not capturing emails already—why aren’t you?
Building an email list is one of the best ways to be in contact with your customers. And it has secondary benefits too, which we’ll touch on later. Email is on average the highest-converting channel that you have (although we’ll talk about how to use Facebook better than the average).
One of the easiest ways to build a list is through ecommerce, if you’re doing it already—get a list of the email addresses your customers have used to buy (and make sure they’re submitting an address early in the process, so you can target them even if they abandon their cart).
Once you have a list of people who’ve already shown interest in what you’re selling or offering, you’re able to use Facebook’s tools to transform those warm leads to white-hot leads.
Upload the email addresses as a list and you can use them in a variety of different ways—you can build them out as an audience all by themselves, cut them up into several different segments, and more.
2) Target Inactive Members of Your Email List With Content
Take a look at the list of email subscribers or buyers. What are the immediately evident segments? One obvious one to look at is activity. If there’s a segment of your user base that’s signed up, but isn’t opening your emails, create a custom audience based on that list.
Find a useful post or article that’s tailored to a broad audience—especially if it’s popular on your site—and use that to target them on Facebook. You might be able to convert an inactive subscriber into an active one.
A successful re-engagement campaign can get as much as 10 percent of your inactive base to reactivate. That may not sound like much, but every little bit counts, especially when you’re bootstrapping. You can’t afford to neglect the margins.
3) Retarget People Who Engage With Your Facebook Content
This is one of the easiest ways to use a custom audience.
Building a custom audience based on Facebook engagement both ensures that you’re getting people who are active on Facebook and allows you to fine-tune the criteria you’re using to find them. From likes to page saves, there are a lot of possibilities.
4) Use Videos to Quickly Grab Your Audience’s Attention
Did you know Facebook gets over 8 billion average daily video views?
In addition, as mobile becomes more popular, mobile users are 5 times more likely to watch a video as desktop users are. Capitalize on that by using video to target your Custom Audiences with content they want to see.
5) Create a ‘Thank You’ Page
Did you know you can create a custom audience based on people who visit a specific page on your website? As a bootstrapping entrepreneur, this is one of the key ways you can make your advertising dollars go further.
This is a prime way to create a custom audience that has a high conversion rate, because it lets you target people who buy your products.
Try creating a thank you page on your website that your customers are redirected to after making a purchase. Once you’ve done that, after you’ve gotten some traffic going, you have a resource that allows you to make great Custom Audiences.
6) Retarget Your Shoppers With Cross-Promotions
Did you know that the average revenue for return purchasers is 497 percent higher than revenue for first-time purchasers? You can use your new thank you page to target people who’ve bought from your website, and that can be a significant boost to sales.
Create a custom audience based on people who’ve visited that thank you page and you can capture even more sales from return visitors.
7) Create a Custom Audience Based On Blog Visitors
Your blog is one of the most essential parts of your website. It’s not just important for your own website, though—you can use it to drive Facebook traffic. Use the same page targeting feature you used for your thank you page to grab people who visit the front page of your blog—or, if you’re getting good traffic on a particular post, use that to create a custom audience.
You’re getting people who you know are already interested in what you’re talking about, and people who’ve already looked at your content.
8) Use Lookalike Audiences to Build Your Custom Audiences
When it comes to advertising and marketing, everything works together.
Once you’ve used a custom audience, try building a Lookalike Audience that leads to a page or email capture portal that allows you to add on to existing lists (for example, if it’s a list based on your emails, try sending them to an ebook download or newsletter signup. If it’s a list based on page views, send them to that same page).
Keep updating your Custom Audiences periodically based on the same criteria you originally used—you can import contacts that have the same traits as the list you pulled the first time around.
If you’re a bootstrapping entrepreneur, Custom Audiences is a powerful tool that can help you stretch your advertising dollars further. Take advantage of them to propel your business to the next level.