TikTok and Facebook Audience Targeting Winning Strategy

If your business relies on social media advertising, you are probably basing it on targeting. If you’re not, then, why aren’t you? Targeting is the advertising practice in which the advertiser identifies groups of users that make the right audience for the ad and are therefore more likely to convert. Now, the common mistake many marketers make is focusing on targeting on just one social media. These marketers are missing on a huge chunk of the market, and for no good reason at all. This time around, we’re sharing with you a winning strategy for targeting audiences on two of the biggest platforms – TikTok and Facebook

Why you need to target both on TikTok and on Facebook

Despite having apparently reached its peak in terms of audience growing, Facebook is still the number one social platform in the world. The sheer number of users on Facebook makes it imperative for marketers to direct their ads to Facebook and other Meta products – Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram. However, the golden age of Facebook advertising may be coming to an end, not just because platforms like TikTok are threatening to overthrow it, but because of noticeable drops in Facebook ad performance. These are mainly affecting targeting of Apple users on Facebook, since they now have a chance to opt out of data tracking, which makes targeting much more difficult. Plus, there are issues with Facebook over-reporting conversions and generating inaccurate insights. 

TikTok, on the other hand, is fresh, young and ever-growing. It’s a goldmine for collecting user data, targeting and successful ad placement that actually converts. Obviously, running your ads on TikTok is the smartest thing you can do as a brand at this point. TikTok is no longer reserved for brands that cater to young or very young audiences, as it was once thought. Today, almost any brand can benefit from TikTok ads, but to do it successfully, you need to target your audience. 

When it comes to audience, Facebook has an enormous user count. TikTok’s growth, on the other hand, is nothing short of spectacular. But what’s best, the two audiences don’t overlap perfectly. Facebook has older users, TikTok has tweens, teenagers and young adults. By targeting both these audiences, you basically create the perfect reach. 

TikTok vs Facebook targeting – Key differences

Being a more mature platform with a longer track record, Facebook has a more detailed targeting scope compared to TikTok, but that’s changing, too. TikTok keeps adding new features to its advertising suite, making sure not to lag too far behind. 

In general, Facebook offers diverse targeting criteria – age, location, gender, interests, and such. It also offers behavior-based targeting, but due to the iOS update changes we mentioned earlier, this method is no longer as accurate as it used to be. 

TikTok, on the other hand, has a lot to offer in terms of segmentation. Plus, when it comes to behavior, it offers more accurate insights based on real-time actions and data like screen time, scrolling, sharing, liking, commenting and so on. It’s therefore more suitable for targeting based on behavior and engagement. Hashtag targeting is also available, and it’s a very useful option for increasing your reach. 

How to target on Facebook

There are a couple of strategies you can employ on Facebook that can really take your targeting to a new level. 

There are three main types of audiences to target on Facebook: 

  1. Core audience
  2. Custom audience and
  3. Lookalike audience.

Core audience is the one you target based on demographics (age, gender…), location and behavior. 

Custom audiences are people who have already interacted with your brand. 

Lookalike audiences are people who have not yet heard of your brand but share some important traits with your customers. 

A successful Facebook targeting campaign must involve all three audience types. Once you establish those, you can apply different strategies. For instance, you can use Audience Insights to target your competitors’ audience. 

Next, you can use your custom audience to remarket your product. These will be people who have already shown interest in your brand, which means an increased chance of conversion. 

Remember that you don’t have to target just the audience that has interacted with your brand or shopped with you. Using the Engaged Shoppers purchase behavior, you can display ads to people who have completed a purchase – any purchase – through a Facebook ad. This audience has already realized a purchase intent and chances are they will be willing to purchase through Facebook ads again. 

Finally, don’t forget that Facebook offers tools for highly precise targeting, yielding ultra-narrow audiences you may want to target. The Narrow Audience option allows you to use additional layers and create highly focused, small audiences. This can be as specific as, for example, targeting newly retired people living in suburban Eastern Europe, or young single parents with newborns, and so on. 

Of course, whatever targeting criteria you set, make sure to check the relevance of your ad for your target audience using relevance diagnostics that include Quality Ranking, Engagement Rate Ranking and Conversion Rate Ranking. 

How to target on TikTok

Just like Facebook, TikTok targeting should involve three basic types of audiences: Core, Custom and Lookalike. As we explained in detail in our ultimate guide to TikTok advertising, you can target your audience based on age, location, language, gender, interests, behavior, but also based on the device they’re using and the operating system. You can include or exclude your custom and lookalike audiences as well. 

The key to successful TikTok targeting is to get to know who your audience is, what they want and how they interact with the app. In addition to various analysis tools, it’s always a good idea for brands to actually connect and engage with their audience. That way, you will get an organic and true understanding of what they want and need. With a young and dynamic platform like TikTok, that’s perhaps even more important than simply following the metrics. 

One thing that makes a huge difference between TikTok and Facebook when it comes to targeting are hashtags. TikTok is hugely reliant on hashtags that users explore and interact with. They are the best indicator of virality and popularity of a piece of content and, as such, they can be extremely useful for targeting. Find a popular hashtag that makes sense for your brand to use and then create ad creatives and copy relevant to that hashtag. 

Due to the extremely fast and dynamic nature of TikTok, you will need to be very focused and diligent in your hashtag targeting as these things change from one day to another. 

Finally, if you’re not sure where to start with targeting, try with a broader audience. Then, as you gain more insights (and more ad interactions) narrow it down according to your findings. 

Grow your audience through a hybrid strategy

Since Facebook and TikTok audiences don’t overlap much, the smartest thing you can do in your targeting strategy is to target audiences on both platforms. 

Use TikTok to target younger audiences with specific interests (relevant to your brand, of course). TikTok is ideal for dynamic content so that’s where you should direct your video ads. Also, the platform is most suitable for B2C products and services like entertainment, fashion, lifestyle and so on.

With Facebook, on the other hand, you will have a much broader audience of combined demographic traits. Even if your brand caters to a specific, narrow audience, you can still find plenty of great matches on the world’s most popular social network. Plus, you will get to target people outside of the Gen Z who still make great prospects for your business. 

By targeting people both on TikTok and Facebook, you can, on one hand, increase brand awareness and maximize omnipresence with a lower budget and, on the other, drive sales with customers from both B2C and B2B. 

Finally, with a combined targeting strategy, you can use TikTok to overcome the Facebook targeting shortcomings stemming from the recent iOS updates. 

This audience targeting winning strategy is not too hard to master but if you want to make sure you do it right, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team of TikTok advertising experts, who can help you out with everything from setting up a campaign and ad groups to pinpointing just the right target audience from your brand.

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