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News: Right People: How to Reach Your Desired Audience

Get to know their behavior

Once you have identified your audience, research what they like and the actions they typically take:

  • What devices do they use the most to access Facebook?
  • What types of content do they consume?
  • What topics and trends are they interested in?
  • What brands and Influencers do they follow?

You can use tabs in the Audience Insights tool to find this data or search for existing sources that publish nonprofit market research and demographic trends.

If you’re unable to find existing research that’s useful, you may want to conduct your own. You can survey your staff, beneficiaries and volunteers or host a focus group. The goal of this research is to learn more about what type of people are interested in your cause and why, so you can shape your messaging to fit.

After performing research, you can create a more detailed supporter profile or “persona” of the type of person you want to attract to your cause or campaign. Many organizations assign a name and photo to their persona or personas.

Create content that speaks directly to your audience

Create posts that speak to the interests, habits and desires of your chosen audience. Your research and personas will be useful for this. For more on creating content that speaks to your audience, see our section Grab People’s Attention.

Monitor and evolve

Your desired audience can change as you learn who engages with your content. Periodically review your post insights to see how the audiences you’ve targeted are responding.

Use Audience Optimization features

Facebook has built-in tools that help you control who sees a post. You can access these features by clicking the target icon below the text field when you are creating a post. If your Page has fewer than 5,000 followers, you will need to activate this feature in your Page Settings.

Preferred Audience lets you choose the people you’d like to reach in News Feed for each post. You select relevant interests, and people who share them are more likely to see your post. This won’t restrict people from outside of the audience from seeing the posts.

Audience Restrictions let you limit who can see a post. Only people in the audiences you choose can see the post anywhere on Facebook. This tool lets you select an audience based on age, gender, location, or language.

NOTE: Both Preferred Audiences and Audience Restrictions are currently only available for English-language Pages. For non-English Pages, we offer News Feed Targeting, which controls who can see a story in News Feed but not on the Page timeline.

Preferred Audience insights tell you more about how your audience is responding to a post with Preferred Audience settings. Audience insights show you how each interest you selected is contributing to a post’s reach, likes, clicks and shares.

Use targeted ads

Facebook ads are paid placements of content on Facebook. Ads can appear directly in News Feed or in the right hand column. Ads give you more specific targeting options and allow you to reach audiences outside of your existing Page followers.

Ads are particularly useful if you want to reach new people on Facebook or show your message to specific audiences. Ads can be utilized to:

  • Find new supporters by reaching outside your existing community.
  •  Reach out to new people who are similar to your existing supporters.
  • Make sure more of your audience sees an important post.
  • Send calls to action to people with particular demographics, interests or behaviors.
  • Drive specific behaviors, like visiting your website or signing up for your email list.

For more ideas on how to activate supporters, visit