Building your Tribe

The Power of Words
12th February 2018
Get Your Head Around Facebook Advertising
24th May 2018




The Cambridge dictionary definition of a tribe is “a group of people, often of related families, who live together, sharing the same language, culture, and history”.  In social media terms, the word tribe or ‘digital tribe’ is used as a slang term for an:

“unofficial community of people who share a common interest,

and usually who are loosely affiliated with each other

through social media or other Internet mechanisms”.


From a social media perspective, you are nothing or nobody without a tribe and there are reasons for this as well as steps you can take to build your tribe.




The purpose of social media is to help with your business marketing efforts. This means that you should only be on Facebook (for your business) to find and engage with people that you’re likely to do business with. Otherwise, what would be the point??


Though the size of your following has become less and less important and organic engagement is almost non-existent (since Facebook’s recent change to their algorithm), you still need to understand your ‘tribe’ or audience so that you can target them with relevant content and more specifically with relevant ads.




We have covered this in an earlier blog but in essence we need to know WHO you’re talking to, WHERE to find them, WHAT they want to hear and HOW they want to hear it.


All of this helps you to connect in a way that is relevant to them – on the right platforms, with the right images and the best possible content for them, in the most appropriate language for them.




There are a number of things you can do to identify your audience bearing in mind that, as Ann Hadly once said:


“Even when you are marketing to your entire audience or customer base, you are still simply speaking to a single human being at any given time”.


And this feeds directly into one of our favourite methods for identifying a target audience, which is creating a character that represents your ideal client! If you have been in business for a while and have the luxury of a client database, you should be able to define a character based on who you’ve been doing business with already.

Many of you don’t have this ace up our sleeve as we start out and have to take the time to try and work this out for ourselves. We covered creating a character to represent your audience in a recent blog and we have a form you can use to really delve into this:

Download the Excel version

Download the Word version


This is a great start and once you get going, there are a number of ways Facebook can help – whether or not you already have a base.




Ad campaign success is about putting the right ad in front of the right person and compelling them to purchase or sign up (whatever it is you’re wanting to achieve). Mainly because no-one comes to Facebook with credit card in hand to do business. Facebook does everything possible to help you run successful ad campaigns. Here are some of the tools at your disposal:


1. Facebook Search


Until you have a base, you will have to do some of the work yourself. You can start by searching on Facebook for things that are relevant to your target audience such as:

  • Favorite interests of people who like [insert your niche]
  • Pages liked by [your target’s occupation] who live in [your target’s location]
  • TV shows liked by people who like [TV show your Page is about]
  • Pages like by fans of [your niche]


Essentially this will help you to get closer to your audience. For example, I love dogs but I don’t own one. If you’re looking to sell dog food or toys, I wouldn’t be any good to you. You need to search for things that you know will isolate dog owners versus dog fans. It may be things like attending certain shows, reading certain magazines, watching particular programs on TV, buying at specific shops (or vets) or following certain Facebook pages.


You need to get quite specific in your search by including things like gender, age, location and as many details as you like. Hopefully your results will spark some ideas for what to include in your ad targeting.


2. Audience Insights


You can either use the ideas you got from your search to help with the next level of research – or you or you can skip straight to Audience Insights in your Facebook Ads Manager. Select ‘all tools’ and you’ll find it in the ‘Plan’ section.


When you add an interest relating to your target audience, Facebook will tell you a whole lot about people with that interest such as:

  • Demographics: men vs. women, age groups
  • Page Likes: what other pages they like.
  • Location: cities, countries and languages etc.


The more you know about your audience, the greater the assistance you can get from Facebook. Also make sure that when you type in interests you’re aware of, you also see what else Facebook suggests. This might provide new ideas for targeting your audience.  Here’s some info to guide you through the process.


3. Interests Suggestions


Audience Insights also has a ‘Suggestions tab’. When you add an interest, a whole lot of suggestions are presented. The same thing happens while you are loading your audience – in the process of creating your ad. These suggestions can add huge depth to your targeting.


4. Customer Custom Audience


You can upload your client list from an Excel spreadsheet into Facebook – using either email addresses or mobile numbers – and Facebook will find as many of those people as possible for you.


They generally find about 70 – 80% of your list, mainly because people have multiple email addresses and may not be using the one you have on your mailing list for social media. This audience is called a Customer Custom Audience


5. Once you have a Customer Custom Audience


Facebook can create lookalike audience for you. How clever is that?! It finds common characteristics among your clients and then looks for more people with these characteristics.


You can determine the size of the lookalike audience you’d like to create by using the slider – from 1 – 10 – with 1 being most closely matched to your source. This audience may not seem to be very effective at first – and it isn’t necessarily – but accuracy improves as Facebook becomes more familiar with the characteristics that are most relevant to your business!


6. Web Traffic


Facebook generates code for each ad managers account. It’s called a Pixel. You can add the pixel to every page on your web site and visitors to your site pick up the code (or cookie) and when they return to Facebook are slotted into a Web Traffic Custom Audience linked to your account.


This audience grows as your web traffic grows and it updates itself. No need for you to intervene at all.


And, as with the Customer Custom Audience, Facebook can also create a lookalike version of this audience. The effectiveness of this audience also improves over time. We refer to this as the ‘maturing of the pixel’.


7. Facebook Engagement


This audience works much like the web traffic audience but doesn’t require the pixel. It records anyone that engages with your Facebook profile whether they like something, make a comment, share a post or watch a video. This includes any engagement across the Facebook family of apps and services, including Instagram business profiles.


This type of audience can also be replicated into a lookalike audience.




That’s multiple tools and a total of SIX audiences Facebook can help you with!!


Once you have all of these audiences in place, you can grow your Tribe or Facebook following, create powerful ads, get leads and grow your business!