How to Geo-Target Your Facebook Posts

One of the top questions I receive about social media is, “When is a good time to post to Facebook?”. To be honest, there is no golden answer or a one-size fits all scenario. The first thing I recommend is to review Facebook page insights, as this is a clear indicator as to when your audience is online. One of my New Zealand clients has a peak time of midnight, 3pm and 9pm EST. Why? Because their audience is spanned all over the world. They need to determine the best times by region. For example, they may want to consider posting the same post to 4 specific regions: NZDT, GMT, EST and PST, perhaps all at 12 noon. But how can they do this without sending the same post to everyone, over and over?

There is a solution to a problem, which I believe many businesses will be able to take advantage of to optimize their posts on their Facebook pages. It’s called geo-targeting, which allows you to post and target a specific country, state/province and city. When geo-targeting is used on posts, only the regions you set will be able to see those posts, never seeing duplicate posts based on other timezones. Nifty, right?

How to Enable Geo-Targeting

First, you’ll want to enable geo-targeting, because by default, this setting is usually turned off. Go to your Page Settings then to the General tab, News Feed Audience and Visibility for Posts and turn this setting on.

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Setting Your Post for Geo-Targeting

Next, you’ll want to create a post. If you’ve enabled your targeting, you’ll see the new targeting button beside your post button. Click it, and you’ll be provided with options for geo-targeting. Set your region and hit Save Post Settings. You’ll now see that the Public option has turned to Custom. You can now schedule your post with the schedule icon, but you will need to consider that the scheduling is in your current time zone, so adjust accordingly!

facebook_target_2

Facebook Ad Targeting

Alternatively, you may want to set-up targeting with page post ads in your Facebook ads manager or Power Editor and promote the post as an ad, or boost a post to a specific audience. I prefer to created saved target groups or custom audiences in the ad dashboard. The ad dashboard provides more options for targeting. To access your audiences, visit your ad dashboard, then select Audiences from the left menu. Alternatively, you may want to create an audience based on audience insights, which you can also find in the menu on the left.

Develop a Plan for Geo-Targeting

Now that you understand Geo-Targeting, it’s time to put it into action. Here’s what you’ll need to do:

1. Determine the content you’ll want to post to your audiences. Consider the strategy behind your posts. You can even switch up the message and image for each time zone for maximum impact and engagement.

2. Set your times. If time zones confuse you (which they often do for me), then you might want to use this great time converter tool. Remember that you should consider the audience’s time zone first, then convert it to your time zone. Your time zone is the time you should be scheduling on Facebook.

3. Schedule individual posts by targets. If this seems like a lot of work, you might want to check out Post Planner, which has the option to create and save regional settings.

Measuring Your Posts

Now that you’ve created your posts, you can now use this information for valuable market research. Review the metrics on your posts to see how many people engaged with  it, what kind of response you received, and if you received any valuable conversions. You can take this data for use in your paid advertising, product development, or even offline marketing tactics.

Have you tried Post Gating on your Facebook page? What kind of results did you receive? Let me know my forever free Facebook group, the Social Proof Collective!  

 

  • Rock

    Very simple to use and understand. One question though, Why does the post appear on my newsfeed? How can I request this?

    • Hey there, when you’re creating your unpublished post or offer, you’ll see a radio button on the bottom of the window that says “This post will only be used as an ad”. Make sure to tick it, and then your ads won’t be visible on your newsfeed.

  • Giulia Dominici

    Hello, I’ve another problem with the geo-target posts: I’ve a multilanguage page and I want to create dedicated posts for some languages (using the instructions you give at the beginning). Everything fine for the selected target (Italian, german, russian) but I want to pubblic the same post in English only for the rest of the languages. So I need to create a “rule” which EXCLUDES the languages I chose before (italian, german, russian). Is it possible, or how should I behave?

    • Hi Giulia,

      Unfortunately, Facebook doesn’t provide rules (as yet) for geo-targeting posts for exclusions. You’ll want to create the same post, changing the language target, so only users who speak English will see the post. You may also want to use power editor to set up saved target groups if you’re running Facebook ads or promoted posts. You can then easily segment your targeted groups further, for example, countries that speak English, to see what country receives the most engagement. (see screenshot)

      I hope this helps!

  • Rolf

    Hi there, we Always post to 5 different countries but since last Friday the posts seem to work correctly and fans see only the geotargeted post but when they visit our facebook page they see all 5 posts. Do you have any idea?

    • Hi Rolf,

      There seems to be a lot of people having the same problem as late. Alternatively, select the post targeting shown in the image below. Now, if you’re running Facebook Promoted Posts through you ad manager, you can also create unpublished or dark posts and target that way. I hope this helps.

    • Hi Rolf,

      I’ve been hearing a lot of problems about geotargeting as late. Alternatively, you might want to try out selecting the targeting in your post, as shown in the below image. Now, if you are running Facebook ads, you can create unpublished or dark posts and setup your targeting there. I hope this helps.

  • Marcia Funebre

    Hi,
    For some reason, some of my pages don’t have this option available (however, you can geotag your posts). Any ideas?

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