Marketers communicating via their Facebook pages could once only speak to their entire fan base at the same time. While we’ve been able to geotarget posts, we’d never been given the chance to say “hi” to the men (or women), between the ages of 18 to 35 (or 35 to 55) that were single (or married, or engaged or in a relationship), or to customize our communications to each group.
Now we can − with Page Post Targeting. For the first time on the Facebook platform, sans advertisement, we have been given the chance to have a conversation with very distinct groups. This will allow brands to craft posts, utilize shared content and build engagement with key target markets, thus creating a more personal experience and − with any luck − a more social one.
Page Post Targeting
So what do you need to know about Page Post Targeting? Here’s a quick rundown of the good, the bad and the ugly.
Previously, Facebook posts have been written either to speak to the masses, to the largest demographic of Likers, or to fans a brand ideally would like to reach. The idea was to be very broadly appealing, so people could hopefully relate and engage with the content being posted. While those in the social media industry have done a good job at mastering the art of being relatable to a lot of different types of people, there are a handful of instances where Page Post Targeting comes in handy.
One such example is the case of cross-promoting social media platforms. It has become customary to use Facebook as a way to introduce other social platforms that your brand/company might be on. For instance, if you wanted to remind your fans on Facebook that they could also find you on Pinterest, it would be worthwhile to target that post toward women. This would allow you to engage with the right audience, and ultimately achieve more click-throughs and higher virality.
Additionally, Page Post Targeting gives you the opportunity to leverage the same piece of content in a myriad of ways.
Something like back-to-school time is a different experience for, let’s say, a college senior, a college freshman and a college student parent. Each demographic has different concerns, needs, and a different must-have item for the new school year. Creating copy that speaks to all three while utilizing that same back-to-school sale takes the content a step further and allows for a more personal experience with each individual.
If you’re looking for a big bang of likes, shares and comments, Page Post Targeting is not the way to go. Remember, you are directing your message to a smaller group (in some cases a much smaller group) of individuals.
This means total engagement will be lower, but virality has the potential to be higher than with standard posts. Now this lack of impressive engagement numbers shouldn’t be viewed as all bad. Remember that not every post will be appropriate for targeting, but the ones that are have a greater chance of making it into the newsfeeds of those folks you want to each. And, if done correctly, they will get them to take notice.
Page Post Targeting also requires an extra step. It’s important to note that regardless of who the post is targeted to, the message will still appear on the Facebook Timeline. Unlike geotargeting options, Page Post Targeting only affects newsfeeds and will not restrict visibility on the Page Timeline. A quick fix to avoid multiple messages is to showcase the most general one and hide the others.
Since the feature just rolled out in early August, targeting posts is not yet a seamless experience. Be prepared for the occasional hiccup. But don’t let it deter you from experimenting with this new feature. The key here is just to be a bit more vigilant and patient.
It’s important to remember that, in most cases, there’s no one approach that’s right for everyone – not with Facebook posts or Facebook features.
So, if you’re a brand/company that has one distinct target market, and you have built a Facebook fan base that stays true to that market, then Page Post Targeting may not be the best option. But for those that have multiple markets on and off Facebook, and are interested in targeting campaigns and experimenting with social media marketing – this update is for you!
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land.