Social Media & Social Ads

Facebook Lookalike Audiences: What Are They and How to Create One

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By Berta Ventura, on 9 February 2022

When it comes to expanding your business on the Internet, there are many things to consider like choosing your scope of work, what audiences you want to target, the right marketing strategy, the resources you want to invest, etc. If you add the fact that you may not know whether it will work or not, the whole process can be very stressful.

More often than not, social ad targeting involves either some guess work or spending large sums of money. However, as it turns out, there are now better solutions. Social media can be a great resource for advertising, with features like Facebook Lookalike Audience. Let's take a look at how this works and how you can implement it.

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Facebook Lookalike Audiences What Are They and How to Create One

What Is a Lookalike Audience?

A Facebook Lookalike Audience is a way to reach new audiences that are likely to be interested in your product or service because of their connection with your current customers. A lookalike audience means you no longer need to create new ads or use trial and error to find new clients. Instead, you can use the information you already have from your clients to target new ones that have some traits in common.

What Facebook does is it selects one or more audiences as a starting point for the process, and then it makes use of demographic data, the interests and behaviors of that audience —including likes, emails and comments on social media— to find new people with similar characteristics. This way, you will be using the information you already have from your established customers to reach new ones. It sounds like there is a catch, but there isn’t. It is as simple as that!

How to Create a Lookalike Audience

As mentioned, Facebook offers its own lookalike audience services for marketing purposes, so there is no need to look any further. We will show you how to create your lookalike audience from scratch, so if you already know the drill, you can skip some steps. If not, don’t worry —we will guide you through the whole process step by step.

  1. Access the Facebook ads manager. On the left tool bar, click on “Audiences.”

    Facebook Lookalike Audiences What Are They and How to Create One

  2. Here, you will find a list of options. You need to set the aim and scope first, so click on “Create a Custom Audience” if you don’t have one. If you already do, you can skip steps 2 and 3.

    Facebook Lookalike Audiences What Are They and How to Create One
  3. For your Custom Audience you have to determine your goal and which audience you want to reach. To do this, you can either use your own sources (products from your catalog, your customer list, app or website activity, email list, etc.) or use Facebook’s resources, i.e., people that have interacted with your publications, videos, events and so on. Depending on your goal, choose whichever interests you the most and fill in the information needed. It’s very intuitive, don’t worry.

  4. Now that you have your Custom Audience, click on “Create a Lookalike Audience.”

Facebook Lookalike Audiences What Are They and How to Create One

There you can select:

  • The source. Choose the custom audience you just created or a different one you already have.
  • The country or region. The advertisement will target people from that place. You can choose more than one if you want to go for a bigger scope.
  • The audience size. Choose a percentage range to see how closely you want to match the audience. Lower percentages mean a closer match with the source audience, and a higher percentage signifies a broader match. Facebook recommends a source audience of 1,000 to 5,000 people to begin with but choose what suits you best.

Once you have all your parameters set, click on “Create audience” and… that’s it! The hard part is finished. The audience may take a few hours to be created, but once active, it will work on its own. You can repeat this process for as many audiences you want.

Facebook Lookalike Audiences Tips

  • Make sure your ads are targeting the audiences you created.
  • You can create up to 500 lookalike audiences from a single origin audience.
  • The lookalike audience will exclude people who are already in your audience, so there will not be duplicates.
  • You can have several lookalike audiences for a single group of ads.

Benefits of Facebook Lookalike Audiences

  • Time-saver. There is no need to waste time looking for ways to reach new audiences: the Facebook Lookalike Audience service will do the job for you once you have selected your parameters.
  • Smart layout. You will have all the data about your campaigns and audiences and how they perform in the same place.
  • High degree of personalization. You can customize your lookalike audiences as much as you want according to your needs. Remember the lookalike audience will target a specific group of people with shared interests. The more time you take to customize it, the more accurate the results are likely to be.
  • Budget-friendly. The Facebook Lookalike Audiences service is free to use for the most part. Sure, you can pay extra for certain features, but you can also work your way to a successful promotion without spending a single cent. Plus, you can use one single ad campaign to address different audiences.
  • Testing grounds. Since you can have as many lookalike audiences as you want, you can try out different parameters to see what works for you and what does not. Plus, if your lookalike audiences is not working and your audience is not really engaged, it is as simple as starting over. Trial and error can be key here.

All in all, lookalike audiences are a game changer because of their versatility and easy use. They are a great tool to use on their own or as a complement to some of your other marketing strategies. When done right, they'll expand your reach and help you connect with new audiences.

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Berta Ventura

Social Account Manager at Cyberclick. Le apasiona el marketing, las redes sociales, leer y escribir.

Social Account Manager at Cyberclick. Passionate about marketing, social media, reading and writing.