Top Facebook Advertising Strategies

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Anyone reading this blog post will know that Facebook is a formidable top player when it comes to digital advertising. For any business out there, focus on Google and Facebook, if you do that, you're in great shape. If you just focus on one and not the other, you're leaving opportunity on the table. In this blog post I'm going to break down the top Facebook advertising strategies that are proven to drive customers, Facebook creative best practices, and advanced tracking tips.

Table of Contents

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Customer Targeting

Facebook Customer Targeting

One of the many strengths of Facebook advertising is to upload an email list, and then target these users with Facebook ads. How it works is Facebook will match the emails you upload, against their user accounts. When there is a match (i.e. email uploaded matches that of a Facebook account), you can target these audiences with Facebook Ads.

This is super valuable as you have the opportunity to upload a list of your most valuable audience (i.e. your customers) and target these users with advertising. You can message them with new products, promotions, etc. Nearly every day I see this perform extremely well and highly recommend that any advertiser put this at the top of their list.

Facebook customer targeting use case

An online shoe retailer can upload a list of customers who bought Nike running shoes over the past several years. Then, the advertiser can have pointed ads highlighting the latest Nike models that they now carry. This is super effective because:

  • They’re reaching users who have a relationship with the store, as they’re customers.
  • They’re also targeting users with ads that will resonate with them. Given they bought Nike shoes in the past, there is a strong possibility that sharing new Nike models will resonate strongly with them.

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Remarketing

Facebook Remarketing

Remarketing, the tried and true digital advertising strategy that constantly works. For those who need a refresher, remarketing is the opportunity to reach users who have previously visited your site. The idea is you can “close the sale” by showcasing them an ad with a special offer to complete their purchase.

Not only can you reach users who have previously visited your site, but you can take this a step (or ten steps) further, by showcasing dynamic creative, which is creative that shoes the EXACT product that the user was looking at.

Facebook remarketing use case

The same shoe retailer had a user viewing a few it’s Nike shoes, that user bounced as they weren’t ready to by. The shoe retailer can then target this user and provide a discount (10% off) to encourage them to come back and complete the purchase.

This ad format is super effective because:

  • Advertisers can reach a highly engaged audience of users who have recently visited their site
  • They can give them a reason to close the sale, by offering a discount code

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Look a like audiences

Facebook Look a Like Audiences

Facebook look-a-like audiences are probably one of the most underrated strategies to drive new customers to your site. Facebook crushed the technology on finding users who are similar to your customers, based on a wealth of Facebook user data.

For those who aren’t in the know of look-a-like audiences, let me break this down for you. Facebook gives advertisers the opportunity to create a “seeded” audience list, and from this list, create a list of users who aren’t on that seeded list, but have very similar online behavior of that list.

Facebook look a like audiences use case

That same shoe retailer wants new customers and doesn’t want to continue to market to the same users who visit their site or past customers. Instead, they upload emails of all of their existing customers then Facebook will create a look-a-like audience of users who are very similar to their customers but aren’t their customers.

The shoe retailer will then serve ads to this audience, which haven’t purchased from them before, and eventually drive new customers for their store.

This ad format is super effective because:

  • Facebook’s look-a-like audience targeting is uncanny. It’s amazing how they honed their algorithm to target users who are very similar to the uploaded list.
  • You’ll find new customers who you haven’t had a relationship with before.

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Layered interest targeting

Facebook Layered Audiences

Facebook has a lot of targeting features that most platforms don’t have, Facebook tracks what their users like across Facebook. For example, if I like Nike shoes, Facebook will record that and Nike can take advantage by targeting me based on my interest in Nike shoes, based on liking their page. All of the activity you do on Facebook can be leveraged by advertisers (if it’s not all activity).

There isn’t any other platform where you an target users who express interest in certain topics, brands, stores, etc. To take this a step further, you can target users based on multiple dimensions. For example, target users who like brand A AND sporting activity B.

Facebook layered interest targeting use case

Say my shoe store only sells basketball shoes and I have a new line of Nike Air Jordans. In this case I can leverage Facebook advertising to target users who have an interest in NIKE and have an interest in Basketball. Awesome, with that, I’m honing in on my target customer.

To get even more refined, I can target based on demographics such as age and gender. Maybe these shoes are really meant for late teens and early twenties, and less of adults older than 25. In this case I would target users in who like Nike and basketball and are between 18-24.

This ad format is super effective because:

  • You can target users based on declared interest in certain topics, brands, etc.
  • You can hone in on your exact target audience by laying in several targeting attributes (several audiences AND demographics).

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Facebook Creative

The above targeting in order ill work well or your business, but if you want to take it a step further I’m going to give you a few helpful Facebook creative tips.

Facebook Creative – Tip 1:

Test Multiple Ads

I have a client where we have 8-10 different ads serving at the same time. This may seem extremely redundant but it will boost performance. Here’s why:

For this client, we uploaded a bunch of images and accompanying text. It turned out that two of these creatives just did extremely well and experienced significantly lower cost per click than the rest. If we haven’t uploaded 8-10 creatives, we wouldn’t have found that diamond in the rough.

Facebook Creative – Tip 2:

Automatic Placements

Let Facebook do the hard work for you by automatically placing your ads where it will have the highest change to perform well. Within the ad set, check the “automatic placements”  option and Facebook will serve your ad where it’s most likely to perform, across Instagram, Facebook and their network.

 Facebook Automatic Placements

Facebook Creative – Tip 3:

Test Multiple Ad Formats

While this ties with the first tip, this is unique as the first tip was to test multiple ads, this is to test each of the different Facebook creative formats offered. This includes single image, multiple images and video. Once you test these, you’ll find the ad format that works best for your business.

Facebook Ad Formats

Facebook Creative – Tip 4:

Use Up All Aspects of the Ad Format

Facebook Ads
  1. Make sure you upload an image to the recommended spec, this will make sure it renders clear across all devices and platforms (Facebook, Instagram). Recommended image size is 1,200 x 628 pixels.
  2. Upload an image with little to no text. This is key because you’re uploading accompany text that will serve with the image. If you have words within the image and words appended next to it, it will be way too wordy and you’ll lose interest.
  3. Use the preview tool when you’re uploading text. The reason is you want to keep your text message concise so it fits within the preview, you don’t want words running outside of the ad.
  4. Add a call to action button, such as “learn more”
  5. Facebook Call to Action

Top Facebook Advertising Strategies: Measurement

If you want to be success fun with Facebook advertising you need to make sure you have the correct measurement solutions in place. I recommend two solutions.

Facebook Pixel

Make sure you’re using the Facebook pixel to track all visitors to your site and, most importantly, users who go to your site to purchase.

Google Analytics

By integrating Google Analytics to your Facebook efforts you’ll be able to see what your Facebook audience is doing on your site.  This is critical as you’ll find some targeting drives a ton of site engagement (i.e. pages per view, length per sessions) and some targeting doesn’t. From there you can feed the winning targeting and creative and cut what’s not performing well.  This may seem hard to do, but it’s really not. All you need is Google Analytics and then use this handy tool Campaign URL Builder.

Simply enter in the  destination URL, then add whatever your want to call the campaign (i.e. Facebook Nike Shoe Campaign). Take the updated URL at the bottom and put that as your landing page URL.

Google Analytics Facebook Tracking

This way when you log into Google Analytics, sort by acquisition -> Source Traffic, you’ll see the campaign you’re tracking along with it’s associated site engagement.

Google Analytics

Additional Facebook Resources

Below are several blog posts that might be helpful that I wrote on Facebook Ads.

Facebook Blog Posts

Facebook Ad Management

Facebook Ad Courses

Ben Lund

Ben Lund

Ben Lund is a 14+ year digital advertising vet who founded Rise Marketing Group. Outside of managing his agency, he offers advertising courses on SkillShare and routinely shares his best practices on

Ben Lund

Ben Lund

Ben Lund is a 14+ year digital advertising vet who founded Rise Marketing Group. Outside of managing his agency, he offers advertising courses on SkillShare and routinely shares his best practices on

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Need More Advertising Help?

While I am sharing a good amount of free information through DIY Digital Strategy, if you need more help, feel free to drop me a line on my contact page, as my agency Rise Marketing Group helps clients of all sizes.
Even if you’re not interested in full service advertising management, I would love to hear from you! Ping me a line at and I’ll be sure to follow-up to see how I can help.