Facebook for Consumer, LinkedIn for B2B. Or Is It?

Many people think that Facebook isn’t a B2B marketing channel. However, it should not be written off and can certainly be used to get your message in front of the people you care about, regardless of your industry.

Whilst the LinkedIn advertising platform does provide more options for targeting businesses directly with your ads, the Facebook Ads platform can achieve similar things with a bit of creativity. Firstly, if the company you are trying to reach is big enough there is a possibility that you can simply type the company name into the audience builder and create a campaign that only targets people within your selected company. This is akin to the LinkedIn Ads model.

Often though, the company or companies you are trying to reach are not available on the Facebook Ads platform, so you have to get a little creative. One of the simple things you can do is retarget people who have previously visited your website. To do this you need to synch your website to the Facebook Ads platform via the Facebook pixel, and from there you can create an audience of past website visitors and serve up your ads to them the next time they’re on Facebook. It’s great for reinforcing your brand to people who have already spent a bit of time on your website, and is often used to entice visitors back with offers.

It’s also possible to target the people you care about even if they haven’t been on your website lately. With a simple out-of-the-box integration, or even a list upload, you can provide Facebook with a specific list of individuals you want to reach and ask them to serve your ads only to them. Given that Facebook users are typically registered with a personal email address rather than a business email the match rate can be low, but nonetheless if your database of contacts is large enough you stand every chance of success.

Finally, Facebook offers numerous categories available for advertisers to target. Unless your target market is very niche you should be able to build an audience using the default categories available in Facebook Ads and still find a good level of engagement. For instance, if you wanted to target millennials with an interest in the IT industry within a 50 mile radius this would be possible using the pre-built filters in Facebook.

With over 2.7 billion monthly active users on Facebook it definitely warrants a second look when you’re planning your B2B marketing spend.

Simon Plews

Simon is an experienced marketer who spent 15 years working client-side for some of the world’s leading tech brands including Adobe, Oracle and McAfee. He now provides marketing consulting and campaign management services for fast growing B2B tech companies and ambitious start-ups.