Tapping into the world of Facebook Lookalike Audiences

Facebook lookalike audiences have proven to be a very efficient way to get additional volume for your Facebook campaigns, while making sure that you are targeting audiences which are similar to your existing user base.

Introduced in March 2013, Custom Audiences could then only be created based on your own CRM data by uploading encrypted telephone numbers, e-mail addresses or Facebook IDs of your customers or app users. With the introduction of lookalike audiences, Facebook took the next step by finding users among its user base that shared similar characteristics as your seed audience, and creating a new audience which you could use for targeting.

While we at Adobe see a wide adoption and great returns for clients using Custom Audiences and lookalike audiences from CRM data, Facebook has continued to work on new features to further expand its lookalike audiences offering.

With its latest update to lookalike audiences, Facebook now offers new ways for advertisers to tap into the world of lookalike audiences without having to upload their own CRM data.

You are now able to automatically build out lookalike audiences based on your existing Facebook fans, your mobile app users or users that have visited or converted on your website.

How to create lookalike audiences

  1. Lookalike audiences from your Facebook Fans

Simply select your Fan page as a seed source to create a lookalike audience which consists of people that are similar to your existing fan base.

  1. Lookalike audiences from your mobile app users

When you have the Facebook SDK integrated into your mobile app you can already create Custom Audiences from users that have completed a certain action within your app. It’s now also possible to build lookalike audiences based on those users and find people similar to your existing mobile app users

  1. Lookalike audiences from your website visitors

Facebook recently introduced Website Custom Audiences where you can implement a Facebook tag throughout your website and automatically build out Custom Audiences with people that have visited certain areas of your website. In combination with the Facebook conversion pixel on your checkout page, you can now further expand your reach by creating lookalike audiences from users that have engaged or even converted on your website.

Lookalike Audience Creation in Adobe Media Optimizer

Lookalike Audience Creation in Adobe Media Optimizer

While these updates are already great news for advertisers, another benefit lies in the dynamic format of lookalike audiences. Where before you had to constantly upload new CRM data and create new lookalike audiences to keep your audiences up to date, lookalike audiences now automatically update when their seed audience changes. So as your number of fans, mobile app users or website visitors increases, your lookalike audiences will continuously update, making sure you are always targeting users which are similar to your seed audience.

How to get started

To get up and running with lookalike audiences, follow these three simple steps:

  1. Implement the Facebook website audiences and Facebook conversion pixel on your website and use the Facebook SDK for your mobile app
  1. Define relevant seed audiences to build your lookalike audiences from. For example only fire the website audience tag, if a user has been on your website for at least 30 seconds, making sure that you are only capturing highly engaged users (this rule can easily be implemented with Adobe Tag Manager, part of Adobe Marketing Cloud)
  1. Overlay your lookalike targeting with additional Facebook targeting options like gender, age and interests to further tailor your ads to relevant audiences.

The new lookalike audiences features are a great addition to traditional lookalike audiences and Custom Audiences and a good way for advertisers to leverage one of Facebook’s strongest targeting format while not having to use CRM data.

To take part in the conversation, follow us on Twitter, @AdobeAds.

Victor is working as an Account Manager for Adobe Media Optimizer where he manages international clients advertising their paid performance and branding campaigns on Facebook and Twitter.

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