Yes, 800 million users is impressive. It would be a mistake, however, to spend even more than a second fantasizing about those 800 million users as a whole – and even worse, how you’ll attract them (let’s face it, even Facebook’s own Facebook page falls about 740 million “likes” short).
Because Facebook has become such as impressive worldwide network, it’s easy to get distracted by sheer size alone. In a nutshell: Get focused. Facebook may have revolutionized the world of advertising, but that doesn’t mean many age-old principles don’t apply; the Facebook users you should be most concerned with are the ones in the areas that you service.
Arm yourself with the knowledge of your demographic size and market area in the real world before becoming involved with Facebook. You need to have an idea of your customer base so that you can accurately target these same customers on Facebook. Anyone who tells you, “Go on Facebook so you can market to over 800 million people” is focusing on only the big picture. That’s like saying, “Go in the phonebook, there’s over 103% of the U.S. population with a mobile phone!”
The information needs to be relevant. Once you have a solid grasp on your real world demographics and marketing area, then you can proceed to Facebook and calculate your potential Facebook audience. This is your primary marketing area. Whether you are running Facebook Ads or Sponsored Stories, trying to gain some people who Like your page, or increasing the number of Talking Abouts, you need to focus first and foremost on your primary marketing area. While some spillover is great (maybe you had a loyal customer move outside of your PMA, for example), always keep your eye on a more specific target. When you focus on your PMA, you can better maximize social media channels by keeping your image and brand in front of the people who are most likely to be converted into buyers and believers.
Of course, this is only true of location based products and services. If you sell product nationally, working without a physical location and focusing 100% of your business online, then your local PMA has no relevance. We’ll tackle the approach on that type of business further down the road.