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Facebook Strengthens Ad Targeting with 'Partner Categories' Launch

Facebook seems to have a slew of product updates lined up. It’s coming out with an update once every few days!

Facebook is now loading its ads targeting system with more targeting firepower with the introduction of ‘Partner Categories’. This launch allows advertisers/marketers to display ads on Facebook to people based on their product buying habits on desktop and mobile.

Partner Categories is available to American advertisers from 10 April this year in Power Editor and the Ads API.

Partner Categories utilizes data from selected third party companies such as Acxiom, Datalogix, and Epsilon. However, Facebook has assured users that this data does not include their personal information. Users’ private information is not shared between Facebook, third party companies or advertisers.

Partner Categories works in the same way as other targeting options. Only the size of the target audience is shared with advertisers. They cannot access any personal information of individual users within a category.

Right now, Partner Categories includes 500 unique customer groups. An added benefit is that Partner Categories works with other Facebook ad targeting options. So companies can refine their ad targeting to a greater extent and aim only for the right people.

Ads that are targeted right have better ROI and ensure a better experience for users who are exposed to more relevant ads.

But, what does this mean for brands using Facebook Ads?

Well, until now, you were targeting people who you thought would be interested in your products based on their ‘interests’. Now you can target purchase-ready customers who are actively looking out for products similar to yours. You never know…they may just pick up your product when they see your ad (that uses Partner Category targeting) during their search.

Every category includes information such as the number of users, their spending patterns and the source of the information. Here’s a screenshot that gives you a glimpse some categories:

For example, if you are chain of poultry farms, you can target the ‘Dairy & Egg Buyers’ category. You can target this group of users with ads of special discounts at your stores. Or if some users in this group have shopped at a local store of yours, that local store can target them with store specific discount ads. Even if you are a small, local business, you can target Facebook users in your area with relevant local ads!

This second screenshot offers more insight into Partner Categories:

Here’s another example to illustrate the ways in which Partner Categories can help advertisers:

If you’re an automobile manufacturer or you have an automobile showroom in a particular locality, you can target the ‘Entry/Economy/Compact’ category of users with relevant automobile ads. Moreover, if you are a local business, you can even target local users with localized ads. Then people who are looking out to buy similar cars may make a beeline for your brand when they see your ads.

So, what say marketers? Do you think this ad targeting update will help improve your Facebook advertising ROI? Share your thoughts in the comments box below…

Team Position²

Position2 is an innovative digital marketing agency that accelerates demand through integrated Content Marketing, Paid Acquisition, and Marketing Technology solutions. Our demand acceleration solutions map the buyer's journey across multiple touch points such as search, social, mobile, media, and email. These integrated campaigns are powered by cutting-edge content creation, digital advertising, web design/development, marketing automation, and analytics. We serve hundreds of clients ranging from VC funded startups to Fortune 500 multinational firms. Our 200-member team is based in Silicon Valley and Bangalore and consists of marketing gurus, engineers, data scientists, writers, and designers. Founded in 2006, Position2 is backed by Accel Partners.