In the crowded marketplace that is social media it is getting ever more difficult to be heard, which is why Facebook lookalikes are a prime resource your company should be making the most of.
In March 2013, Facebook launched its lookalike service, a way for you to reach people who might be interested in your business. It is a custom audience that allows you to create more specific content and reach a large amount of relevant consumers.
One of the overall benefits with lookalikes is that you transform a small section of converting customers from your site, into a much larger pool of users with similar interests. Lookalikes helps you target much more specifically, it provides a demographic which is proven to convert.
What is it and how does it work?
To have the most relevant lookalike audience you can edit the settings on the Facebook ad section and use the power editor tool. You can base your lookalike audience on a variety of sources (people who like your page, or visited your website).
You can also upload details from your customer lists, like: email addresses, phone numbers or Facebook UIDs, to target these users in Facebook ads and target lookalike users with this information.
Your Lookalike Audience can only include people from one country at a time providing that you have at least 100 people from the country on your custom audience list.
Facebook will apply your filters and find the the top 1% of closest matches (your lookalikes.) If you find this list too limiting you have the option to optimise your setting to have the top 5%, you can do this by altering your “reach" settings.
An important thing to remember when you optimise your reach settings is that Facebook will find more people who are similar to your existing custom audience but the matches will inevitably be less precise.
As with every aspect of building a business, the settings you choose need to be personal to your business. It is not a one size fits all situation. Settings that work for one company won’t necessarily work for yours so it’s important to find your own way with it. Your perfect settings will not emerge over night, it will take some playing around.
Setting it up
As mentioned previously, go to Facebook’s ad manager (www.facebook.com/ads) to get started. The first step is one of the most important, so do take your time, don’t rush. You will be asked to make your custom audiences for most, if not all, specific sections of your site.
Select the audiences option, then the ‘create audience option’ which you will find in the top right corner. Then go to ‘custom audience’ at this point you will be asked to select an visiting option: Anyone who visits the site, people who visit specific web pages, visiting specific web pages but not others, people who haven’t visited in a certain amount of time and custom combination. There is no right or wrong choice, it is unique to what you are trying to achieve.
You can further refine this conversion-centric custom audience. If you select the: “all visitors excluding X visitors” Facebook will exclude site visitors who are looking at a section of the site that is irrelevant to your marketing material, one less job for you to do.
Once you’ve completed your custom audience segments, you will start building your lookalike audiences. Ad will target people who will likely be interested in your product with a high probability to convert. You will be asked to choose the level of similarity as well as the features to compare. You can do this using the lookalike audience tool in the create audience section.
It may take anywhere between 2 and 24 hours to generate your lookalike audiences on Facebook. After this (one-time) time period, your audiences will automatically refresh every 3-7 days, providing you are still regularly targeting ads to the audience.
When lookalike audiences are used with optimum settings, more people will be sent to your page and you will soon see the greater ROAS (Return On Advertising Spend) you’re looking for.
The overall aim for all business should be to integrate lookalike audiences, using the most recent data you have. We recommended using lookalike data, with your converting customers on your website, and as time passes by, the list will update. Any shift in change of demographic or converting audience, will automatically change your advertising target market, all without you having to lift a finger.
Of course, all of this is much easier said than done. Get in touch if you would like us to go through this in more detail with you.