How To Integrate Social and CRM Data to Improve Your Twitter and Facebook Ads


social media how toDo you advertise on social channels?

Want to reach your audience more effectively?

By combining CRM data with social data, you can enhance your ad targeting.

In this article you’ll discover how to integrate CRM and social data to improve Twitter and Facebook advertising.

What Are CRM Data and Social Data?

Every action people take online creates data. Each interaction, email signup, survey question and social engagement helps you learn more about your target audience and create customized online experiences that can influence the bottom line.

Two big sources of user data—CRM and social media—fit together perfectly for digital marketing campaigns. They’re like two long-lost friends finally joining forces and making magic happen.

integrate social and crm data to improve ads

Discover how to integrate social and CRM data to improve Twitter and Facebook ads.

Before diving into how to mix CRM and social data to achieve social advertising success, you need to understand what constitutes CRM and social media data. After all, having a wealth of user data is great, but if you don’t know how to use it creatively, then all you really have is a set of email addresses.

CRM data

Customer relationship management (CRM) is a system that enables you to manage the data of current and future customers, usually based on their email addresses. Once you collect email addresses, you can segment that list based on the available data.

CRM data is highly valuable when you want to create a customized email campaign that appeals to the unique interests or behaviors of each segment. For instance, if you want to reach customers who frequently spend a great deal of money on your brand, it’s a good idea to segment your email lists based on frequency of purchases and revenue generated.

green man image shutterstock 151778927

CRM data helps you segment your customers. Image: Shutterstock.

Segmentation of your email lists is key when trying to tease out useable CRM data. There isn’t any point in collecting 100,000 email addresses if you don’t know much about the people behind them.

If properly maintained, your CRM data can boost ROI exponentially.

Social data

Social data is like the hip younger brother that often gets overlooked. While social data might be a little less tangible than CRM data, it can help boost the impact of advertising campaigns.

If you manage social accounts, you have access to insights and analytics dashboards that provide you with data on the overall performance of your channels. There is a lot of great information available that can help shape targeting parameters for social advertising. However, there is one small problem with the social data you have access to: It’s anonymous.

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Social data is valuable but anonymous. Image: Shutterstock.

Because of user privacy, the data you see in these dashboards can show you basic trends, but not detail on a user level. If you have a good grasp of your social communities, this information might be sufficient. You could mix data with experience and craft a social advertising strategy that might make an impact. However, you wouldn’t know if your targeting was correct until after the campaign was over.

By using only social data to target ads, you run the risk of targeting people who should be relevant to your brand but, in reality, aren’t.

#1: Combine CRM and Social Data

This is the fun part. If your CRM data is segmented in a useful way, combining CRM and social data for social advertising campaigns takes a lot of the guesswork out of your ad targeting.

So how do you blend these two data sources?

Facebook and Twitter allow you to upload email lists directly into their ad platforms in hopes of matching users to email addresses. You can then serve ads to users who were successfully matched.

Because Facebook and Twitter know every user’s activity within the platform based on their email address, combining these data sources gives you a true advantage. Hopefully, your CRM data has been segmented in a useful way so you can upload different lists based on which audience segment you want to reach.

email image shutterstock 149691551

Combining your CRM and social data help you reach the right target with your content. Image: Shutterstock.

There is a bit of a process to uploading your CRM data to Facebook and Twitter, so I’ll walk you through the steps for each.

#2: Upload CRM data to Facebook

When you’re logged into Facebook, navigate to the Facebook Ads Manager and select Audiences.

selecting audiences in facebook ads manager

To get started, select Audiences in the left pane.

On the Audiences tab, click the green Create Audience button and select Custom Audience.

create new custom audience in facebook ads manager

Create a new custom audience.

When presented with the option to select which type of audience you want to create, select Customer List.

select customer list

Select Customer List as the type of audience to create.

You now have the option to upload a file, copy and paste your list or import data from a tool like MailChimp. I recommend selecting Upload a File.

select upload file

Select Upload a File so you can upload an email list.

Select Emails as your preferred data type. Then click Upload File and navigate to your .csv or .txt file. When you’re finished, click Create Audience.

select email as data type

Upload an email list file for your custom audience.

Facebook uploads your list into its system, and your audience will be ready to use in about 30 minutes. You’ll receive a notification when it’s ready, or you can just periodically check the Audiences tab.

Next, you’re prompted to create an ad using your new audience or expand your audience by creating a lookalike audience (see below). A lookalike audience is comprised of Facebook users similar to the CRM data you just uploaded.

choose a custom audience

Create an ad using your custom audience or create a lookalike audience.

You can now use this audience in your next Facebook advertising campaign.

#3: Upload CRM data to Twitter

Twitter has a similar process as Facebook for uploading CRM data.

After you log into your Twitter ads dashboard, hover over Tools and select Audience Manager.

twitter audience manager

Open the Twitter Audience Manager.

The Audience Manager opens. Next, click Create New Audience and select Upload Your Own List from the drop-down menu.

upload new audience list to twitter

Create a new audience by uploading your own list.

On the Create New List Audience page, shown below, you can customize your audience’s name and select what type of data you want to upload. Under Specify the Type of Data in Your File, select Email Addresses; then upload your CRM data. When you’re finished, click Create List Audience.

specify the data type

Specify the type of data in your file and then upload the file.

After you’ve created your Twitter audience, you’ll need to wait about a day or so before it’s ready to use.


Congratulations! You just laid the groundwork for marrying your CRM data with social data to achieve social advertising success.

Based on a recent study from Salesforce Marketing Cloud and Facebook Marketing Science, email openers who saw social ads were 22% more likely to make a purchase. Also, the reach of email campaigns increased by 77% when they were coordinated with social ads.

Leveraging your CRM data with social advertising makes perfect sense. The key is making sure you segment your CRM data in a useful way.

What do you think? Have you tried to use your CRM data with social advertising? Tell us about your experience below.

Green man photoAvatar set photo and Mail abstract photo from Shutterstock.
how to integrate social and crm data for better social ads

Tips for integrating social and crm data to improve Facebook and Twitter ads.

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