Build a Lookalike Audience

What You’ll Learn

By the end of this lesson, you will be able to:

  • Find people similar to your current customers using lookalike audiences.
  • Articulate the capabilities and requirements of the lookalike audience tool.

What Are Lookalike Audiences?

Imagine you are an established business with a loyal group of customers. You have already run ads to a Custom Audience to retarget your ads to people who have expressed interest in your products or made purchases in the past. Now you’d like to attract new leads who don’t know anything about your brand or products.

While you could create a Core Audience by manually identifying characteristics of your current audience, we have developed a tool that can do this for you. When you create a lookalike audience, Facebook analyzes the characteristics of your Custom Audience to reach new customers that fit the same criteria.

What do I need to create a lookalike audience?

You need to have a Custom Audience of at least 100 people. Try using a different lookalike source with a larger size.

How can I create a highly relevant lookalike audience?

Make sure the Custom Audience includes people who have directly taken action on the ad objective you are trying to achieve.

Case Study: Pura Vida

Because lookalike audiences help you find new people based on your current audience, they must be used in conjunction with a Custom Audience.

The team at Pura Vida launched the ad campaign just prior to the holiday weekend by first creating an “event” on Facebook and building an event response ad. This ad promoted early access to the sale and teased big savings to come, which stirred up anticipation and excitement and helped build word-of-mouth.

Pura Vida showed the ads to US females aged 13–54, excluding all recent online customers and website visitors. It also served the ads to a value-based lookalike audience comprised of people who were similar to Pura Vida’s highest-spending online customers, identified through data from its Facebook pixel―a piece of code that helps retailers understand actions taken on its website.

Additionally, the marketing team targeted ads to several lookalike audiences based on:

  • male customers (an active group during the holiday gifting season)
  • customers who purchased during the Black Friday to Cyber Monday timeframe the previous year
  • people who purchased within the last 24 hours, to help reach other customers who were buying at the last minute

Pura Vida determined the results of its November 26–December 4, 2019 campaign using the reporting data in Facebook Ads Manager, which showed a:

  • 2.8X lift in return on ad spend
  • 2X increase in sales, compared to previous sales record
  • 28% increase in average order value, compared to 2018

Think About It

Imagine you are running ads for a large eCommerce store. They are expanding their presence in 5 new countries and have included cross-country functionality on their website.

You have recommended lookalike audiences, since the client has already been using Custom Audiences on Facebook and Instagram to reach existing customers.

You are deciding which Custom Audience to use. Sort the following Custom Audiences by relevance.

Keep Learning

Check out these resources to continue developing your skills.


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