The most popular targeting criteria among Facebook advertisers are age and country, used always or often by 55% and 53%, respectively, according to [download page] an April 2012 report from Social Fresh. And while a significant proportion target interests, both precise (50%) and broad (42%), only about one-third target gender. Overall, 57.1% of respondents are targeting 2 to 5 audience segments, although an additional 21.6% limit their targeting to a single segment.
Despite most advertisers marketing to multiple segments per ad, the report finds that 85% of respondents are not using management software that enables more segmentation. According to a March 2012 study from comScore, which analyzed 12 national premium brand’s advertising campaigns, display ad campaigns with multiple demographic targeting variables have trouble reaching their intended audience. The same report found that 44% of the campaigns included gender in their target set.
Data from the Social Fresh “2012 Facebook Ads Report” indicates that when it comes to advertising goals, 44% of respondents spend the most money on audience growth, while 27% spend the most on conversion and 22% on awareness. These budget priorities differ from overall Facebook advertising goals, though: the most common reason for running Facebook ads is awareness (61%), ahead of audience growth (53%) and conversion (44%).
ROI topped the list of challenges among advertisers, cited by 46% of respondents. Tracking ad success with analytics was the second most-cited challenge, by 22% of respondents, followed by creative (12%) and split testing (9%).
In terms of split testing, two-thirds are testing their ad creative, while about 3 in 5 are testing their ad targeting. Only about one-third are testing their landing pages.
About the Data: The Social Fresh results are based on a survey distributed online by Social Fresh and its research partners from February 16 – March 2, 2012. 347 Facebook advertisers completed the survey.
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