At this very moment, there are marketers out there achieving great things with the help of Facebook Advertising.
However, there’s a good chance that a lot of these marketers aren’t taking full advantage of what Facebook Advertising actually has to offer.
In fact, a lot of them might be able to take their Facebook Ad Campaigns to the next level, by making use of some of Facebook’s ‘Advanced features.’
In this post, we’re going to take a look at what those advanced features are and how you can make use of them.
Once you’ve finished reading, you’ll know how to take your Facebook Ad campaigns to the next level and stay ahead of the competition, by using tools and strategies they didn’t even know existed.
1. Audience Insights Tool
The first thing we’re going to take a look at is the Audience Insights tool.
If you’ve spent any time running Facebook Ad campaigns, you’ll know that the biggest indicator of success is often how well you target your ads.
An awesome ad creative, marketing funnel and even product won’t mean anything…if your ads aren’t being shown to the right people.
It’s often the case that those with the best targeting, tend to get the best results when using Facebook Ads.
So, with that in mind, what can you do to make sure you’re targeting your ads properly?
More importantly – how can you do this when you know next to nothing about your target audience?
That’s where the Audience Insights tool comes in.
This tool is the savior to anyone who wants to figure out how they should go about setting up the targeting for their ad campaigns.
By providing this tool with one or two data points, you can uncover a lot of data about a certain kind of audience.
Using it, you’ll be able to laser target your ads even if you didn’t know much about your audience to begin with.
And even if you do know a lot about your audience – this tool can still teach you something new, thereby providing you with novel targeting approaches, you might not have previously considered.
Let’s take a look at how you can use the Audience Insights tool.
First head over to – https://www.facebook.com/ads/audience_insights.
Once there, you’ll see this page – pick the ‘Everyone on Facebook’ option.
In the left-hand column, you’ll want to input an ‘Interest,’ related to your audience.
Note: You can learn a lot by just inputting an interest. However, providing location data can massively improve the precision of the data returned – so be sure to also select a relevant location too.
For the sake of this post, let’s suppose that we have an e-commerce store that sells ‘Paleo Snacks’ and we’re looking to sell to people who live within the United States.
Aside from the fact that they live in the U.S., the only thing we know about our audience at the moment is that they’ll have an interest in the ‘Paleo Diet’ – so let’s put that into ‘Interests’ category.
Upon entering an interest, we’re presented with a lot of data based on the ‘kind’ of audience that will have an interest in the Paleo Diet.
We can use the information returned to target our ads with precision.
Let’s take a look at some of the key data points provided.
To begin with, we’ll review the Age and Gender section.
We can see that 86% of this audience is made up of ‘women.’
The dark shading represents the audience in relation to the whole of Facebook.
So for instance, 54% of Facebook is made up of women. But 86% of this Audience, is made up of women.
This lets us know that the audience we’re trying to target, is disproportionately made up of women.
It would therefore be a good idea to target women, if we want to increase the odds that our ads will be shown to people who’ll care for them.
So, based on the information above, it’s clear that it would be a good idea to target women first. Additionally, it would be a good idea to focus on the age ranges of 35-64.
If you scroll down, you’ll see something known as the ‘Lifestyles’ section.
This section gives you the chance to typically see what ‘group’ of people will be part of the audience being shown to you.
While you can make use of this data, most marketers don’t really need to worry about it initially, since it’s not really helpful for someone trying to set up a campaign that will get fast results.
The next section, lets us identify relationship and education data.
Here we can see a disproportionate amount of this audience is ‘Married’ and, is a ‘University (postgraduate). Again, we can use this information to precisely target our ads.
The next section relates to Job Titles.
Job titles can be helpful, but you’ll want to be careful as targeting by job title can be temperamental at times.
In next section you can see common ‘Page Likes’ of this audience.
The cool thing here, is that by using these Page Likes you can discover novel targeting approaches that you might not have considered before.
So, for instance, it makes sense to target ‘The Paleo Secret.’
But you might not have thought to target using interests such as the ‘Power of Positivity’ and ‘Little Things.’
Provided your ‘surrounding’ targeting settings are tight, such as those that relate to demographics, you should still be able to reach people interested in your product by also targeting these other ‘novel’ interests.
If you scroll down, you’ll also see a section that relates to Pages that are deemed to be the most ‘relevant’ for your audience.
In theory, these are the pages that your audience will ‘identify’ with the most, but sometimes targeting these pages can be hit and miss and you’ll probably get better results using the data above.
In the next section you can see the ‘Location’ of your audience.
This information can be helpful if you want to really target your ads with precision, so that you can achieve great results with relatively small campaigns.
There are three locations here, where there are a disproportionate number of people, who belong to this audience. As a result, it might be a good idea to target these locations, if you want to set up a small campaign that has a high chance of success.
The next section of interest, is known as ‘Activity.’
Here we can see the typical activity of our chosen audience, on Facebook, within the past 30 days. The good thing here, is that our audience ‘likes’ to click on ads, as they have done so more than the typical Facebook Audience.
Interestingly, we can also see the device data for this audience.
We can see that a disproportionate number of people use desktop and mobile and that this audience also uses iPhone/iPods disproportionately. Additionally, the adoption of Android devices is also disproportionate amongst this audience.
Again, if you want to ensure maximum relevance, making use of this data can be helpful.
The next section, is based on the typical ‘Household’ of our audience.
While this section can be intriguing, your ability to make use of the data here is often limited by the country you’re targeting, as there isn’t always data for every country. But, in any case, note down anything that’s disproportionate and keep it in mind.
The same also applies to the next section, known as ‘Purchases.’
While the information presented is interesting, you’ll really need to dig into it to find a way to turn it into solid targeting parameters.
So that’s the Audience Insights tool!
It can be a very powerful way to find out more about an audience that you only know one or two things about.
You’ll want to experiment with it yourself, by setting up some small campaigns, based on the data you’re able to gather.
Hopefully, though, you should now have decent a sense of how you can improve your ad targeting, with the help of this tool.
2. Custom Audiences
People who’ve already had some kind of interaction with your brand in the past, are much more likely to respond to any marketing efforts you send their way.
This graphic, shows something known as the ‘Customer Decision Journey.’ It highlights how people make the decision to purchase, after they’re familiar with your brand.
So with that in mind, it makes sense to show ads to people who are already familiar with your brand … right?
And that’s where Facebook Custom Audience targeting comes in.
Using this feature, you can create ads that are targeted towards people who have in some way or another, had an interaction with your brand in the past.
In order to use this advertising method, you first need to create your ‘Custom Audience.’
For the most part, you can create a wide variety of Custom Audiences, based on the various kinds of interactions that someone can have with your brand – on or off Facebook. You can then create ad campaigns, of which target only these individuals.
Here are the kinds of custom audiences (and brand interactions) you can create ad campaigns around –
Let’s take a look at how you can go about creating a Custom Audience.
To begin with, head over to https://www.facebook.com/ads/manager/audiences.
Once there, click on ‘Create Audience’ and then select ‘Custom Audience.’
You’ll then see this screen –
The Customer File option, allows you to target people on Facebook, provided you have their email address or phone number.
Of course, in order to do this, you’ll need to have a list of customer email addresses or phone numbers on hand.
You can also import data from MailChimp, if you have the ability to do so.
Note: There’s also the option to combine your data with Lifetime Value (LTV) information.
If you’re not sure how this feature works, or what LTV is, here’s a quick explanation from Facebook –
The idea here, is that Facebook will analyze your most profitable customers (based on customer lifetime value) and then try and find other people on the Facebook network that share similar traits.
You can then market to these people and ideally in the process, create more customers that will spend similar amounts to those of whom represent your most profitable customers.
For you to be able to do this, you need to be able to present Facebook with LTV figures in the first place.
If you have that data and you’re going to create a Custom Audience of which includes LTV data, make sure you insert LTV data into your dataset using the format shown below.
As mentioned, though it can be helpful, LTV data isn’t necessary and you can just make use of phone numbers and email addresses if you want to.
The second option is to create a Custom Audience based on ‘website visitors.’
This is where you create an audience of people, based which pages they have/haven’t visited on your site.
To make use of this feature, you first need to install something known as the Facebook Pixel on your site.
The Facebook Pixel will help keep track the behavior of those visiting your site.
If you want to create your Facebook Pixel, you’ll need to follow these steps.
To get started go to https://www.facebook.com/ads/manager/pixel/facebook_pixel#.
You’ll then see this screen. Click on ‘Create a Pixel.’
Then give your Pixel a name.
If everything goes well, you should then momentarily see this screen.
You’ll then be given the option to pick how you want to install the code.
While there is the option to ‘Use an integration or tag manager,’ most people will find that the ‘Copy and paste the code’ option is better and so that’s the one we’ll cover in this post.
When you’ve picked the second option, you then need to go through the process detailed below.
Installing your Pixel can be tricky if you’re not used to dealing with website code (you might want to read this guide 😉 ).
Though don’t let this intimidate you, as for the most part, you just need to make sure you place it between the ‘<head>’ tags and that the Pixel is installed on every page you want to track data.
If you’re using a ‘self-hosted’ WordPress solution, you can also use the following approach –
Once you’ve added the Pixel Code to your website, you might also want to consider adding something known as ‘Event Codes’ to your website.
Event codes are important, because they’ll let you know when certain ‘Events’ such as a purchase or newsletter sign up has occurred.
As a result, you can now target people based on factors other than the pages they’ve visited on your site.
Here are the event codes that you can make use of –
If you’re a little unsure where to insert the Event Codes, here’s some help –
Note: Make sure that you install this code only on relevant pages and that you don’t add it to the Pixel code you’ll install on all of your other pages.
If you add an Event Code to the main Pixel code – and then implement that pixel code on every page, all your data will be muddied, because your Event will be triggered unnecessarily.
Because of this, you’ll notice that Facebook generally recommends that you install the code, outside of the <head> tags, as shown below.
Once you’ve installed your Pixel and added the necessary Event Codes, you’ll then want to check the ‘Pixel Status.’
You can do that by going to the Pixel section in the Facebook Ad manager.
There’s also the option to create a Custom Audience based on ‘App users.’
Now, this option can be a little bit technical since you need to adjust the code of the app, to allow for this kind of audience to be created – so we won’t cover it here.
What’s good about this feature, though, is that you can create custom audiences based on specific events that take place within your app. So for instance, if someone passes a certain level or if someone hasn’t used it for a long time.
Lastly, there’s also the option of creating a Custom Audience based on how people have interacted with your brand/content ‘directly on Facebook.’ This is also known as ‘Engagement Audiences.’
The option you go with is going to depend on what ‘assets’ you have and the kinds of content you have on Facebook.
It’s often a good idea to use Custom Audiences based on people who are most likely to convert. While this is possible, with the other kinds of Custom Audiences that we’ve covered, ‘Engagement Audiences’ makes this really easy.
For instance, in the ‘Lead Form’ section, you can target people of whom ‘opened but didn’t submit form.’
The fact that these people opened the form lets you know that they’re at least partially interested in what you have to offer.
You could then run a campaign that is designed to get these people to complete the action.
The fact that these people have already been exposed to your brand, increases the odds that they’ll successfully complete the action another time around.
There’s even the option to run ad campaigns targeted towards people, based on their levels of engagement with your video content.
With this feature, you can target people based on the percentage that they’ve watched of a certain video.
If people have watched at least 50% of your video, it’s likely that they’re interested and now aware of your brand. As a result, there’s a good chance that they’ll be engaged, if you run further marketing campaigns aimed at them.
3. Lookalike Audiences
The next advanced feature we’re going to take a look at is ‘Lookalike Audiences.’
When using this feature, Facebook will create an audience similar to one that you already have.
All you need to do is let Facebook know which audience you want to ‘emulate’ and then Facebook will automatically find people that match the required parameters.
This feature is powerful for a number of reasons.
For one, it makes targeting a heck of a lot easier.
Suppose you have an ecommerce store and you want to create an ad that is going to generate more sales.
Using Lookalike audiences, you can provide Facebook with a list of your existing customers, and Facebook will then create a Lookalike Audience based on that list.
The people who belong to the Lookalike audience will share similar demographics and traits to your existing customers. Therefore, when shown ads for your products, there’s an increased likelihood that they’ll be interested in what you have to offer.
This feature is also powerful, because it allows for you to scale campaigns.
Using Lookalike Audiences, you can successfully expand the reach of a campaign, without doing too much harm to your existing campaigns.
The targeting algorithms Facebook uses for Lookalike Audiences are really powerful, so they’ll be able to find ways to target people that are similar to your existing audience, using strategies you might not have considered.
As a result, once you have a campaign that’s generating results, you just need to enable ‘Lookalike Audiences’ and put some money behind that audience. You can then double down on any success you’re currently achieving, maximizing your returns.
You may even want to consider using Lookalike Audiences when your campaigns look as though they’re suffering from ad fatigue.
This is when everyone in your chosen audience has been exposed to an ad too much and they’re starting to respond less and less.
The chart below does a great job at showing how this can happen.
When ad fatigue occurs, your ads cost more to run and the results they return are worse.
Right, now let’s take a look at how you can set up Lookalike Audiences.
Note: To make use of Lookalike Audiences, you first need to have created a Custom Audience, that Facebook can use for inspiration. If you have not done this, do so now using the steps we covered earlier.
To begin with, head over to the ‘Audiences’ section.
Click on ‘Create Audience’ and then select ‘Lookalike Audience.’
You’ll then see the following screen –
Note: There is a mention here, once again, related to LTV. If you want to make use of this feature, follow the instructions covered earlier, in relation to creating a Custom Audience, of which contains LTV data.
You then need to pick a Custom Audience that you want Facebook to analyze.
Next, pick a location.
The location option is really helpful, because it makes it easy to ‘transfer’ your campaigns to other regions.
This is especially helpful, if you find that your campaigns are losing steam in a certain area.
Once you’ve picked a Location, you’ll then need to pick an ‘Audience size.’
The closer this figure is to ‘1’, the more the Lookalike audience will resemble your ‘source’ audience.
It’s generally a good idea to start out with the audience size of ‘1’ to begin with, as this’ll let you obtain the best results, thereby keeping wasted ad spend down.
Keep in mind that there is an ‘advanced option.’ This advanced option allows for you to pick multiple audience sizes at the same time.
While this feature can be useful, in practice it could be a little bit hard to keep track of which audience size is driving the best results. You may, therefore, want to consider running specific campaigns, for specific Audience sizes, if you’re new to Lookalike audiences.
4. Facebook Lead Ads
The next advanced feature we’re going to take a look at, is Facebook Lead Ads.
For most marketers, the process of collecting leads using Facebook Ads, goes a little something like this…
Facebook Ad – > Landing Page –> List
While this is a tried and tested process, Facebook Lead Ads remove the need for a landing page.
By using Facebook Lead Ads, you’re able to collect leads from directly within Facebook – or more specifically, from directly within the ad.
Aside from the fact that people don’t need to wait around for a landing page to load, there are some additional benefits that come with using Facebook Lead Ads.
For one, you’re able to benefit from the sense of trust that comes with using the Facebook Platform.
Because lead forms aren’t filled out on another website, Facebook users will inherently trust the lead form a little more, because their existing trust in Facebook will spill over into their willingness to engage with the Facebook Lead Ad.
On top of that, the ‘form filling process’ is made a lot faster.
Facebook already has a lot of the information that you’re trying to obtain from people.
Because of this, Facebook is able to automatically populate the forms within your Lead Ads upon people clicking on them.
This means that your target audience has to put in less effort into completing a lead form, thereby increasing the odds that people will complete the form – of generally which means more leads.
Note: Now, of course, at times, less effort can sometimes mean less qualified leads. But for the most part, this is something you’ll need to compare against your own data.
Here are some examples of what a Facebook Lead Ad looks like, both for Desktop and Mobile.
When creating Facebook Lead Ads, the ‘full lead ad’ could have four steps (though you can make it so that there is only one).
Here’s an example of the ‘Context card’ of which is optional.
And here’s an example of the ‘Customer Disclaimer’ card, of which is also optional.
When the process is finished, people will see an ‘End Card’ like the one below.
Okay, so with that out of the way, let’s take a look at how you can set up a Lead Ad.
Note: If you’re reading an Advanced Facebook Ad Tactics Post, odds are you already know the fine details of creating a Facebook Ad. So we’re just going to touch on some of the key points here, of which relate heavily to Facebook Lead Ads.
To set up a Facebook Lead Ad, go to and then select the ‘Lead generation’ option.
With Facebook Lead Ads, you can select two different placements – Facebook News Feed and the Instagram Feed.
You’ll want to experiment here to find the best placement for your needs.
For most people, though, sticking to the ‘Facebook Feeds’ and ‘Instagram Feeds’ is best.
As with other Facebook Ad products, you’re given the chance to decide, how you’re going to be ‘optimizing ad delivery.’
When it comes to Facebook Lead Ads, you can optimize either for the ‘Links Clicks,’ or ‘Leads.’
Again, this is something you’ll want to experiment with, but in my experience, I’ve found that Link Clicks can work out better sometimes.
As you go through this process, you’ll notice on the right-hand side, there will be a graphic notifying you of what’s possible, given your current parameters for the ad.
This graphic can be helpful, when you’re trying to work out what your targeting settings and budget will provide, in terms of a return.
In the next section, you get to actually set up your lead ad.
For the most part, this is all pretty much the same as what you’d find for a normal News Feed ad.
The only ‘novel’ section, if you like, is the bit at the bottom, where you need to create the ‘Lead Form’ for your ad.
To create your lead form, click on ‘+ New Form.’
You’ll then be given the chance to set up each of the sections within the form. Remember that you don’t have to complete each section, as some are optional.
An example of this, is the ‘Welcome screen’ of which you can see below.
What you select for the ‘Questions’ section (of which is mandatory), will depend on what kind of data you’re looking to collect.
There are a lot of options to choose from, and there’s even the option to create a ‘Custom Question.’
If you don’t have one set up on your website, you’ll need to take the time to do so, as you’ll need to provide Facebook with a URL to it.
Lastly, you’ll have the option to edit the ‘Thank you screen.’
This page gives you the chance to let people know what they can expect, now that they’ve filled in the form.
If you suggested that people were going to receive a coupon or a gift, in exchange for filling out the form, you can tell them how they’ll get access.
For example, you could set up the website link option, so that people can click on it to gain access to whatever it is that you’re giving away.
Once you’ve done everything, click on ‘Finish’ – which can be found in the top right-hand corner.
You’ll then see a screen that looks similar to the one below.
As highlighted above, Facebook will provide some help in terms of how you can set things up so that leads are automatically sent to your CRM, without having to manually upload them using a CSV file.
While it’s not a necessity to set this up, doing so can help you save a lot of time later on down the line if you currently use a CRM solution.
In any case, once you’re done, you can then click on ‘Place Order’ and Facebook will review your ad and if all is well, start running it.
5. Facebook Messenger Placement Ads
The next advanced Feature we’re going to take a look at, is using the placement option of ‘Messenger.’
There are a lot of marketers out there, of whom didn’t know they could incorporate Facebook Messenger into their campaigns.
Which is a shame, because using Messenger as part of your ad campaign can actually make a huge difference.
Because it makes your marketing feel more human.
You’ve probably experienced for yourself, both from a marketing and customer perspective, the power of personalized and conversational marketing.
Using the Facebook Messenger placement, it becomes really easy to create marketing that fosters this kind of dynamic.
Another great thing about messenger ads, is that it allows for you to generate faster conversions.
Over a Messenger conversation, interactions happen at a much faster rate, when compared to email.
Conversations over email take a lot longer and it’s difficult to quickly answer questions and overcome doubt.
But with Messenger, you can quickly answer any of the questions that potential customers might have and even negotiate with them – almost as if you were standing right in front of them.
This is powerful, because it dramatically cuts down the time your customers might spend within the ‘Buyer’s Journey.’
Here’s a brief overview, of how Messenger Ads work.
You can also use Messenger Ads to promote ‘Offers.’
Let’s take a look at how you can set up such a campaign.
Note: As before, we’re not going to go into the nitty gritty details of setting up a Facebook Ad campaign, simply because you probably already know how to do so by now.
… Though, if you’re interested in seeing a quick overview of the process, here you go –
To begin with, you need to pick a ‘Traffic’ or ‘Conversions’ objective.
When it comes to the ‘Traffic’ section, make sure you have selected ‘Website or Messenger.’
For the Placements section, make sure the only one selected is Facebook, and that ‘Feeds’ is the only subcategory selected.
Note: You’re free to experiment with the other Placement options (Apart from Instagram, which doesn’t work for Messenger Placement Ads), but for most, News Feed Ads can be the best place to start.
Then go through the normal ad setup process – but this time around select the ‘Messenger’ option as the destination.
As you’ll notice, the ad itself, is going to look like a normal ad.
It’s just that when someone clicks on this ad, they’ll be taken to Facebook Messenger, instead of a website/landing page.
Note: On mobile, Messenger ads will only be shown to people who have the messenger app installed.
You’ll then want to click on the ‘Set up Messenger Content’ option.
Upon doing so, you’ll see the following screen.
As you can see, there are many options here, in terms of how you can set up the ‘Messenger Content.’
To begin, with, you might just want to go with the ‘Text’ option and then create something simple, but personable.
You’ll see an example of how this can be done, below.
Once you’ve created your Messenger text, click on ‘Done.’
You can then click on ‘Place Order.’
It is important that you monitor how people are interacting with your ads.
By observing the kinds of questions and requests that people are making, you’ll be able to improve your ‘Messenger text’ so that you’re able to achieve better conversions over time.
In this post, we’ve taken a look at some of the advanced features that you can use when it comes to running Facebook Ads.
While you might not have a need for all of the features that we have covered, there is a good chance that there will be at least one strategy here that you can make use of.
Whatever that strategy is, be sure to try it out as soon as possible.
The sooner you put it into practice, the sooner you’ll be able to figure out how to get the best results from the said strategy.
Best of luck!