“One of the biggest advantages that Facebook offers to advertisers is the ability to conduct precise interest targeting. Brands have the ability to target their Facebook updates directly to precise niche audiences based on people’s interests that they have shared with Facebook.”
That’s the considered opinion of Steve Wick, founder and president of San Francisco-based MobSoc Media and a former Accenture partner with 21 years of experience in technology and strategy practice areas.
Writing at AllFaceBook, Wick says “There are many benefits to advertisers from precise interest targeting — finding new fans, engaging with a wider pool of Facebook users, recruiting brand evangelists and increasing conversion rates — but one of the biggest benefits that is still being discovered by many advertisers is how precise interest targeting can complement brands’ native advertising strategies.”
Of course, Facebook is ever-changing. Recent changes to its rules and News Feed algorithm has created a situation in which a “much smaller percentage of people who like brands’ pages will actually see each new post.”
But according to Wick, “Facebook is offering brands less organic reach, but it is hopefully instead presenting an even more targeted opportunity to reach exactly the audience that is most relevant for the brands.”
Wick thinks the Facebook moves mean success for native advertising.
“It’s actually a perfect fit,” he says. “The advantage of native advertising is that it gives brands the ability to build relationships on a deeper level with audiences that are most likely to be interested in the content.”
It’s not — as they say — the quantity, but the quality.
“Instead of putting native ads in front of as many people as possible, the best results from native ads often come from going deeper and building credibility with niche interest-based audiences,” writes Wick.
Wick cites the example of Mountain Dew, which promoted an interview with professional skateboarder Paul Rodriguez that was published on its Green Label platform.
“This is a great example of how brands can create native advertising content that is relevant to their customers’ broader interests (not just “about your product or service”). Facebook makes it possible to boost each individual Facebook post and pay to reach a wider audience based on people’s interests — for example, Mountain Dew could promote the Paul Rodriguez interview to people who have an interest in skateboarding. Or the company could promote other music-related posts to reach fans of a particular band or style of music.”
All and all, Wick says, “Advertisers need to think more in terms of niche audiences and develop strategies for how to reach people based on their other interests — not only their interests that are directly related to their products. Not every single person on Facebook is going to see their posts, nor do they all want to see those posts — the key is to create content that speaks more immediately to a highly focused audience, and then pay to reach that audience.”
There’s nothing to fear in Facebook’s new algorithm, Wick argues.
To read the whole essay, click here.