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Location Targeting Updates to Meta Ads

Meta is infamous for making quiet, sudden updates to their advertising platform. While their most recent update has just begun to roll out, it will surely make noise among their advertisers. 

Your clients may not be affected yet, but many advertisers have noticed a significant change to the location targeting options available in Meta Ads Manager.

Up until recently, there were four location targeting options to select from:

  • People living in or recently in this location
  • People living in this location
  • People recently in this location
  • People traveling in this location

The default option was “People living in or recently in this location,” but now it is the only one that remains. Many advertisers might not have changed the location targeting on their ads from the default when they had the opportunity to and may not be affected by the update. For other advertisers who relied on the other three options, their choice to narrow audiences by location and targeting efforts are now limited.

You may be wondering, “Why is this an issue?” While the four original options seem similar, they are vastly different and matter to an advertiser’s campaign goals.

Let’s consider a local flooring business whose goal is to increase leads from people within their city as an example. With “People living in or recently in this location” as their only location targeting option, their campaign will now reach people who live in their city and people who have recently visited it. If this business will not travel outside a specific radius of their town for projects, targeting someone who was visiting it but lives miles away would not be a valuable person for them to target.

If the old options were still available, in this situation, the business could select to target just the people living in their service area. But, since Meta has removed that option, it’s possible that this business will spend money on leads that they cannot use.

As you can see, this change is significant and will undoubtedly affect the Meta Ads advertising experience. With every update that comes our way, our team has strategies in place to ensure your clients’ budgets are being used to their fullest potential and that the right audience is being reached.  

What we are doing to adapt to the change:

  • Optimizing campaign goals 
  • Implementing strategic targeting tactics
  • Utilizing targeting exclusions 
  • Staying ahead of the latest updates


If you have questions about what this update means for your clients or what the the team is doing to evolve our strategies with it, feel free to reach out to us, and we would be happy to speak with you further.

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