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Work Those Email Lists (with Ads)

If you have a website but you haven’t been capturing email information, you may want to open up a different tab and put an email capture on your site now, before coming back to us. Just pause right here.

Oh good, you’re back. Why did you just do that, you ask? Because if you have a list of 1,000 or more personal emails, there is a number of different ways you can use that list to your advantage.-

Using email blasts is a great way to advertise to audiences that have already shown interest in your brand, or exhibit similarly interested behaviors. Once you have your list of personal email addressed compiled, you can selectively reach them through different platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Google.


Facebook aims to narrow down your audience as much as it can in order to target the most relevant audience possible. The primary classifications that Facebook offers are demographics, location, behavior and interests, but there is an additional option. The Custom Audiences option can get your ad, page or special offer to those who you know and are already on Facebook. You can utilize this by uploading a CSV or text file of your customer’s email or phone number. Facebook will match that information to its database of profiles and then serve them ads directly (source).

Another feature Facebook has is “Lookalike Audience,” which helps you reach people on Facebook similar to the people in your custom audience list. For example, say you have a clothing company and you have the emails of all the customers who purchased an item from you in the last 60 days. You can upload the list of emails to Facebook, and it will automatically match the emails with profiles. Later it will find users with similar behaviors and interests as your customers and shows them your message. This helps you to extend your reach quite a bit.



Twitter offers a similar service called “Tailored Audiences” which again allows you to upload a CSV or text file of your customer’s data so ads will be targeted specifically to them. In the case that you wish to advertise a holiday promotion to customers who’ve purchased your product in the past 90 days, Twitter will match the list of customers you provided to their respective Twitter handles, and show users a Promoted Tweet containing the holiday promotion. (source)


Google is a powerhouse with its own system of reaching customers through an email list. Its system is quite similar to both Facebook’s and Twitter’s services explained above, this time with the name “Customer Match”.

Customer match is currently available only on search, Gmail and YouTube. Let’s say we want to promote a new offer to our existing customers through Google ads. We can upload a list of an unlimited number of customers to our Google Adwords. Next, we can create or update the campaign’s target audience. When those users sign in to their accounts and use either search, Gmail or YouTube, our ads will be right there for them to see. Simple, isn’t it?

Google also offers a service similar to Facebook Lookalike called “ similar audiences” which allows you to reach people with similar characteristics as your remarketing list. It’s a simple but powerful way to reach potential new customers in order to increase traffic and conversion rates. Google’s internal data states that using “similar audiences” typically results in:

·    60% More Impressions

·    48% More Clicks

·    41% More Conversions

*Google Internal data 2013

We hope that we’ve succeeded in making the case for why it is so so useful to have a database of your customer’s email addresses.

Have any of you been using email lists to retarget or acquire customers through any of the mentioned platforms? In your experience, has it been useful? Let us know in the comments.

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