How marketers can take advantage of Facebook’s Advanced Matching Pixel

If you're not using Facebook's Advanced Matching Pixel, contributor Justin Freid says you're missing out -- and he explains why you need to adopt it.

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Facebook has become a staple within marketing plans across many industries. The ability to reach their enormous user base using behavioral and demographic data allows you to expose your advertisements to an extremely targeted audience.

Yet there are even more benefits to advertising on Facebook that many brands are not taking advantage of, perhaps because of a lack of awareness or confusion about its utility. One of those features is the Advanced Matching Pixel.

What is the Facebook Advanced Matching Pixel?

Facebook has provided its Advanced Matching Pixel since 2016. It gives advertisers the ability to connect their customer data — such as email addresses, phone numbers and other demographic data — to their Facebook campaigns.

Prior to this, advertisers couldn’t track whether the audiences they advertised to on Facebook converted or not unless the conversion happened within a browser that also had the Facebook cookie present. But when this launched, it allowed advertisers to connect users to conversions, even when they were using other browsers, when they’d just cleared their cookies and so on.

Additionally, the Pixel gave advertisers the ability to find and reach their own customers (those represented in their databases) with Facebook Advertising and allowed them to prospect for new customers whose profiles resemble their existing ones.

Earlier this month, Facebook launched a new and improved version of the Advanced Matching Pixel, which provides advertisers with even more data. Facebook now offers two versions of their pixel, Manual and Automatic.

What does the new automatic version of the pixel offer?

Facebook specifically calls out two opportunities that the automatic version of the pixel offers versus the manual option.

Increased custom audience sizes
Custom audiences is a great feature that allows you to use your own data or a third-party data provider to create an audience to target on Facebook. The automated version of the pixel will allow you to “automatically” and continuously sync your customer data and match it with individuals on Facebook. In theory, the stronger connection will allow you to collect more audience and/or conversion data, giving you more opportunities to optimize your campaigns.

Increased number of conversions tied to FB advertising
 Unfortunately, many marketers still operate on the last-click attribution model. This leads to SEM and/or organic search getting the lion’s share of conversion. But, as all of us know through the theory of behavioral economics, those touch points along the conversion path from display, out of home, TV and social networks like Facebook, do provide value.

While this does not solve all of the attribution modeling issues in marketing, this pixel will allow you to see who was exposed to your ads on Facebook and later converted. By doing this, you’ll have a better understanding of how well Facebook is contributing to your overall marketing mix. If you happen to be using Facebook’s conversion optimization capabilities or a third-party tool, this additional data can be fed into the bidding algorithm to adjust as needed.

How do I implement the new version of the pixel?

If you are already using the Advanced Matching Pixel, the implementation is easy. As shown on Facebook’s development forum, you can literally click a button to change over from the manual to the automatic version of the pixel. There is also flexibility on what data is collected within the pixel.

Why should advertisers use the Automatic Advanced Matching pixel?

Ultimately, the more data you have on how your campaigns perform, the better. But you have to be able to gather insights and execute on the data. Thankfully, the data being delivered through this Advanced Pixel is actionable.

While it is in a silo of advertising related to Facebook, it can directly help you with increasing your custom audiences and remarketing lists, while also providing more conversation data you can use for optimization.

Contributing authors are invited to create content for MarTech and are chosen for their expertise and contribution to the martech community. Our contributors work under the oversight of the editorial staff and contributions are checked for quality and relevance to our readers. The opinions they express are their own.

About the author

Justin Freid
Justin Freid is a digital marketing veteran with over 12+ years of experience helping some of the largest brands in the world leverage the digital landscape to connect with their target audiences. Currently leading the SEM, SEO and social media teams at CMI Media, a WPP Company, Justin helps pharmaceutical companies create and execute digital strategies. With experience in industries such as finance, insurance, pharma and CPG, Justin brings a unique approach to clients. His expertise across all facets of digital marketing creates an interconnectivity between efforts, leading customers further along down the conversion funnel.

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