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June 26, 2018

Building Audiences Best Practices, Part 2: Custom Audiences

How to reach your existing contacts through mobile advertising.

Custom Audiences

In our last blog article, we shared best practices for using demographics, interests, and behaviors to build a Target Audience. Today, we tackle reaching your existing contacts by creating a Custom Audience.

Part 2: Custom Audiences

Custom Audiences help you use data you own to reach people on mobile and social channels, across multiple devices. Unlike Target Audiences, which only use data that people self-report to social media platforms, Custom Audiences allow you to securely hash your own data and combine it with hashed social media platform data. This process lets marketers reach existing customers in a privacy-safe way.

Custom Audiences are also a building block for creating Lookalike Audiences, which allow marketers to find people similar to existing customers. We will cover Lookalike Audiences in our next blog article.

Creating a Custom Audience From a Data File

Use details (such as first and last names, email addresses, phone numbers, dates of birth, zip codes, cities, and countries) from your organization’s customer relationship management database to create a data file to upload and build your Custom Audience. The more data you provide, the better the match rate will be for your Custom Audience.

Creating a Custom Audience from a data file is done securely and in a privacy-safe way. Both your proprietary data and the social media platform’s data are strongly encrypted through a process called data hashing. The original information can never be extracted, and user privacy is protected.

After you upload your data file, it may take up to 24 hours for your Custom Audience to be available to use. You’ll be notified when it’s ready.

Custom Audience Tips

To achieve the best results with your Custom Audiences, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Align data sources with your goals. Custom Audiences can achieve business objectives such as acquisition, retention, and re-engagement. For best results, use a data source that aligns with your objective. For example, if you hope to deepen your relationship with existing customers, include those with a propensity to purchase additional products or services in your data file.
  • Target across devices. Consider cross-device targeting to ensure you’re sending the right messages to the right people on the right device. For example, if your customers tend to convert more on desktop, you might build Custom Audiences of people further down the conversion funnel and reach them with strong call-to-action messaging on those devices.
  • Use quality data to build your Custom Audiences. When building Custom Audiences from a data file, high-quality data (like complete email addresses or newer data) can increase the total number of people in your audience.

Modify and Manage Audiences

You can save audiences for future use, and you can modify saved audiences to test and optimize your targeting. Access to all saved audiences is available in the Audiences area of the Denim platform. There, you’ll see a list of all your audiences, the date they were created, the date they were last used, and their status at-a-glance. You can also click into an audience to view its history, edit or archive it, or create new audiences based on it.

If you’d like to see how easy it is to build, modify, and manage audiences in the Denim platform, schedule a demo today.

Be sure to come back to the Denim Blog tomorrow to learn best practices for creating a Lookalike Audience.

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