Why Building a List May Have Just Gotten Even More Important

by Adam Kreitman

Building a list of prospects and customers has always been one of the key pieces of a successful online marketing strategy.

No matter what happens to your search traffic, if you have the names and email addresses (and, even better yet, the phone numbers and physical addresses) of your clients and prospects, you can always go to them directly and leave Google out of the equation.

That’s an extremely powerful position to be in.

Well, if you have that list of email addresses and/or phone numbers, things may have just gotten even better for you.

Facebook announced that, starting this week, Facebook advertisers will be able to run ads that target their customers by either email address or phone number.

The way they describe it working is you can import a database of your contacts into Facebook. Facebook will match the information from your database with its user records (though supposedly they won’t have access to your data) so that you can run ads targeting those on your list if they’re on Facebook.

Using Facebook advertising to target those who have already Liked your brand on FB has long been an under-the-radar way of keeping your message in front of your customers and prospects. And it’s also pretty cheap to do. Often you can advertise to your own followers for only a few dollars per 1000 impressions.

Take Things Up a Level By Combining Your List With Facebook’s Targeting Options

The other cool thing about targeting your existing customers by phone number and/or email address is combining your list with the area where Facebook advertising really shines – the targeting options.

Instead of advertising to your entire list, you can target only women between 26 and 40. Or only married men 35 and older. Or only those will college degrees. Or only those who live in a specific geographic area.

With a big enough list, the sky’s the limit on how you can slice and dice it using Facebook’s targeting options.

A lot of people are knocking Facebook these days.

Yes, their stock price is in the toilet. Yes, their advertising program can be difficult to use. Yes, it’s difficult to track results.

But the Facebook advertising platform can still be effective, if you’re in the right market and know how to use it effectively. And if you’ve been building a list, this new feature provides some very intriguing possibilities.

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