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Use Search Data to Prospect New Customers on Facebook

Published: May 28, 2013

Author: Ben Plomion

fbx targeting
First there was Facebook Marketplace, which lets marketers target Facebook users based on their demographic information and interests. Then came Facebook Exchange (FBX), a real-time bidding environment that allows marketers to target Facebook users based on the sites they visited outside Facebook. For example, if a user abandoned his shopping cart on JCPenney.com and then visited Facebook, JCPenney could target him with a 10% off coupon to bring him back.
Now, we’re in a new era of FBX—one where the power of intent that makes search ads so powerful has finally come to Facebook.
Following a partnership between Facebook and my company, Chango, marketers can now target impressions to Facebook users based on searches they’ve performed on Google, Yahoo!, Bing and other sites. And, since you’re targeting users based on their search terms, it means that FBX now allows you to serve ads to potential customers who have never even visited your site.
targeting fbx search
That’s right, we’re talking about good old-fashioned prospecting. Here’s how you can get in on the game:

Choose a Partner

FBX doesn’t run on data provided by Facebook, so you have to partner with a platform to access their third-party data. The right partner needs to be able to effectively target Facebook users based on the searches they’ve performed on a major platform, which means that your partner platform needs to have access to a lot of this data.
Each user’s interests can be extracted from the searches they perform, and the creative on your display ads needs to appeal to those interests.

Target Deeply

With the right partner, you can work around the missing data from Facebook to make your targeting as precise as it would be on any ad exchange. For example, you can target Facebook users according to their geo-locations, derived from their IP addresses. And when you bring a third-party data provider into the mix, you can usually get valuable data based on users’ online activity—the time of day they usually shop on retail sites, for example. Serving a user an ad at exactly the right time in the purchase cycle can greatly increase your chances of landing that conversion.

Analyze Your Results

If you’re not seeing incredible results at first, chances are your FBX partner isn’t bringing the right data to the table. Make sure your partner has the right data for your needs and also that your partner is doing plenty of A/B testing with your creative so that you can dynamically serve the best possible ads to the best possible individuals.
If you use Search Retargeting through FBX correctly, you should see great results—the early numbers on FBX are destined to cause some jaws to drop. After all, when you take the intent that’s revealed by searches and bring it to the world’s most popular social network, you’re, in essence, combining the marketing power behind Google and Facebook. No wonder it works so well.

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