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CRM email addresses meet Facebook for hyper-targeting

One of the challenges of social media marketing is connecting known customers to their online profiles. Salesforce.com aims to make those connections a bit more clear by linking its Marketing Cloud to Facebook’s Custom Audience ads, which allow brands to target ads to users with whom they have an established business relationship.

Michael Lazerow, CMO of Marketing Cloud, announced at the Dreamforce conference in San Francisco, that brands using Salesforce can reach into their pool of stored CRM email addresses—acquired over the course of a business relationship—and target messages to those customers on Facebook.

“I just bought a Ford Flex. Ford doesn’t want to spend money advertising the Fusion Hybrid to me,” Lazerow cited as an example during an interview with Direct Marketing News. “But they do want to market tips for new car owners and see whether I’ve been taken care of.”

Here’s how it works: once brands decide which customers they want to target on Facebook with a specific ad, they hash the selected customers’ email addresses for security purposes and send the file to Facebook. Facebook aligns the addresses with the right profiles, and those users get the brand’s ad.

According to Lazerow, what makes the Salesforce/Facebook combination capable of hyper-targeting is the fact that brands take in a great deal of email addresses. Lazerow anticipates that this feature will be widely adopted among travel and e-commerce businesses. Starwood Hotels, for instance, has nine brands.

“Think what that means,” he said. “Starwood can create ads for the St. Regis people that are different than ads for the Sheraton people.”

Hyper-targeting ads also benefits Facebook which, according to its Q2 earnings report, derives 84% of its total revenue from ads. The value of Facebook ads have been steadily increasing, according to a July report from TBG Digital, thanks largely to its new mobile ads.

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