Small businesses face a real challenge with finding ways to use big data. One way is to use some one else’s data. A good place to start is to use Facebook Lookalike audiences. This allows you to get ahead of your competition. It’s like you put on your running shoes when you’re chased by a tiger. You can’t outrun the tiger – but you don’t have to. Just your competitor.
So how does it work?
All you do is define an audience – which you can do from demographics, from people who’ve liked your facebook page or visited certain pages on your site. You can even supply a list of email addresses or mobile numbers. Then you ask Mr Facebook to put these criteria into his magic data algorithm machine and find another 10,000 people like these.
It really is that simple.
You can keep combining these to get as tight an audience as you like. Then you run an advertising campaign. More about the mechanics of that in a later post.
For now have a look at this screencast which shows you a little bit more about how it works.
You see, Facebook has captured all this data from people who have gone onto the site and voluntarily given it so they can talk to their friends. And it has developed the algorithms to mine it – so that you don’t have to. Of course you will always be at a disadvantage relative to Facebook itself but for a small niche business that may not matter too much.
Our challenge as entrepreneurs and marketing managers in small teams is to come at this from the side. We haven’t got the resources to do what the big players do. But we can do enough to be disruptive enough in our own backyard to get some commercial benefit. Facebook Lookalike Audiences are a great place to start.
You can learn more about digital marketing from our white paper page which also lets you sigh up for the course. Learn more here.