How to Create Custom Lists for Targeted Facebook Marketing - dummies

How to Create Custom Lists for Targeted Facebook Marketing

By Amy Porterfield, Phyllis Khare, Andrea Vahl

Facebook created a way to segment your Facebook Friends into special lists to better market your brand: smart and custom. The benefit of both types of lists is that they allow you to share your posts with smaller groups of people.

Smart lists which Facebookcreates for you — stay up to date based on Profile info your Friends have in common with you, such as family, the city where you live, workplaces, or schools. Although Facebook creates these lists automatically, you can edit them at any time.

To access your smart lists, look on the left sidebar of your Facebook Profile home page for the Lists section. Depending on the info in your Profile, you might see smart lists of your relatives, Facebook Friends in your town, and Facebook Friends you went to school with.

Custom lists are what you create as a way to selectively group certain people whom you’ve added as Friends. Click More next to Friends to see your custom lists. The name of your custom list and its members are visible only to you.

If you send a post to a custom list, those on the list can see who else that post was sent to, but they won’t see the name of your list. If you name a list Prospects I Plan to Land as Big-Money Clients, for example, the people on that list won’t see what you called it — so get as creative as you like!


A benefit of using both smart lists and custom lists is that they allow you to share your posts with smaller groups of people. If you just had a family reunion and took a bunch of photos, for example, you may choose to share those photos only with those in your Family smart list. Overall, these lists allow you to intelligently choose whom you talk to.

Whenever you want to share something with a specific list, you can use the drop-down audience selector in the status update box and pick one of your lists.

So how does all this relate to your Facebook marketing strategy? Because it’s very likely that you have potential clients and customers mixed in with your Facebook Friends via your Profile, custom lists are a great way to segment your personal friends from current and potential customers.

You can communicate with them on a regular basis from your Profile.You can create multiple lists — depending on how you want to communicate with different groups — and then post information, photos, videos, and promotions that you know each group will find valuable. When you laser-focus your communication with custom lists, your marketing messages will pack a bigger punch — and get you even better results.

Here’s how you set up a custom list:

  1. Point your browser to, and log in to your account.

    By default, you land on your home page.

  2. In the left column, hover your mouse over the word Friends.

  3. When the word More appears, click it.

  4. Click Create List (top-right corner of your screen).

    A pop-up window appears, prompting you to name your list.

  5. Type a name for your list.

    The name of your list will be visible only to you — not anyone else on Facebook, including those you add to the list.

  6. In the Members box, below the List Name box, type in the names of the people you want to add to your new list.

    Each time you begin to type a new name, a drop-down list appears with potential Friends to add. You will want to know the name of the Friends you want to add in advance so you can type them in at this time.