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Is Facebook Stalking Me?

We’ve all had it happen before.

We talk to a friend about a particular product or service, and then mysteriously (and creepily) that same product shows up in our Facebook feed as a sponsored ad.

HOW DID THEY KNOW? Is Facebook stalking you?

The short answer is yes, they are stalking you.

The long answer is that it’s a complicated process, and Facebook is not willing to divulge exactly how they do it.

Don’t worry, they are not listening to your conversations through your microphone. It’s a lot more data science-y than that.

There are a number of ways for Facebook ads to be targeted to you, including but not limited to: your location, online search behaviours, your friends’ online behaviours, and your recent purchases. But one of the most interesting ways that Facebook targets ads is by using data to typecast its users into categories of consumers. Social media marketers like Kaden Ave are then able to use these categories to serve our ads to.

If you are interested in knowing how Facebook has typecast you, follow these steps:

  1. Go into your Settings. To get to your settings, click the down arrow on the top right corner of your Facebook window. On mobile, click the bottom right button with 3 bars and scroll down to Settings.

  2. On mobile, click into Account Settings. On desktop you will automatically be taken to your Account Settings.

  3. Click “Ads”. You will be taken into your Facebook ad preferences.

  4. Click “Your Information”.

  5. Click “Your Categories” (on desktop) or “Review and Manage Your Categories” (mobile).

These are the categories that Facebook has placed you in as an individual consumer. You are able to manage these categories and your other ad settings from this page.

That said, please don’t touch these settings. As social media marketers, we REALLY love having a way to serve ads to our most engaged audiences. And by keeping your categories highly relevant to you, you are more likely to be shown ads that you actually care about.

Do you have questions about Facebook audience targeting and how it works? Contact us! We’d love to chat.

Thanks for reading!

Kady & Avery

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