No Gender in Audience Controls

This could be a problem.

When using Advantage+ Audience, you can adjust gender within audience suggestions…

Advantage+ Audience

but there’s no option for gender within Audience Controls. Only age minimum, location, custom audience exclusions, and language.

Advantage+ Audience Controls

This is a problem I’ve heard about from women who market to women. They adjust the audience suggestion to reach only women. Meta may start showing ads to only women. But if they get results from men, delivery will expand to them.

This could be fine for sales campaigns. If men don’t buy your product, the algorithm should learn. The problem is at the top of the funnel.

This kind of optimization is already problematic, but it’s worse with broad and expanded targeting. If you optimize for post engagement and target women only, Meta can show your ads to men, too. And you can bet that some men will jump into the comments.

It doesn’t matter if it’s creepy engagement or they’ll never buy. Meta doesn’t care. It’s taken as an indicator that men will engage with your ads, so your ads will be shown to more men.

This is a major issue and Meta needs to fix it. Add gender to Audience Controls. But also fix optimization to work for the top-of-the-funnel.

Otherwise, it will never work with broader targeting.