Strike Facebook ads gold with Custom & Lookalike Audiences

Liz McTaggart

Jun. 01, 2017

Marketing is a critical component of any event life cycle. We’ve tapped our in-house live event marketing pros– some of the best in the business– to share tips and tricks based on the questions they’re asked most often by Ticketfly partners. These best practices and advice for getting the most out of the Ticketfly platform reach partners through our monthly FlyTips newsletter. 

In this post, digital marketing manager Liz McTaggart explains how to leverage Custom and Lookalike Audiences to make Facebook advertising more effective.  

With millions of daily active users, Facebook advertising is an incredibly powerful way to reach people with your live events.

One of the reasons it works so well, besides the fact that everyone is on Facebook all the time, is the way you’re able to target your campaigns very granularly. If you’re currently advertising on Facebook, you know you can segment who receives your ad by location, age, gender, likes and interests, connections, relationships, language, education, workplace, and more. One of the more advanced features Facebook offers is the ability to create a unique audience segment for your ad campaigns using your customer contacts (email addresses), website traffic, or mobile app. These are known as Custom Audiences.

Creating your own Custom Audience is the first step to supercharging paid ad campaigns and it’s incredibly easy. To begin, you’ll need a .csv file with your customer or subscriber email addresses.

Creating a Custom Audience from your own file:

  1. Go to your Audiences in Facebook Ads Manager
  2. If you already have audiences, click the Create Audience dropdown and select Custom Audience. If you don’t have any audiences, you’ll see audience creation buttons, rather than dropdowns
  3. Click Create a Custom Audience
  4. Click Customer File
  5. Click Add from your own file

Once you have uploaded the file, Facebook will hash the data and match it to existing users. The result will be your Custom Audience. Once your Custom Audience is ready, you’ll be able to select it for your Facebook and Instagram ad campaigns.

Need more a more detailed step-by-step? Try this.

Targeting your existing fans with Custom Audiences ensures that you’re reaching people interested in what you’re offering.

While Custom Audiences allow you to promote to people on Facebook that you’ve already engaged with elsewhere, you can also use them as a way to create new groups of users called Lookalike Audiences.

A Lookalike audience is a segment of Facebook users with a similar set of interests and behaviors as your existing audiences. Targeting your ads to Lookalike audiences is a great way to get in front of folks you’re not already connected to that are highly likely to be receptive to your message.

Sound complicated? Don’t worry, Facebook does all the heavy lifting.

Creating a Lookalike Audience:

  1. Click Create Audiences in the top left and then select Create a Lookalike Audience from the dropdown
  2. Choose your source (one of your Custom Audiences)
  3. Choose your country
  4. Adjust your audience size with the slider (a smaller audience will be more similar to your Custom Audience)
  5. Click Create Audience

It can take 6 to 24 hours for your Lookalike audience to be generated. The great news is that it’ll refresh every 3 to 7 days as long as you’re still actively targeting ads to that audience.

Now that you’ve earned an “A” for Custom and Lookalike Facebook audiences, put your new skills to the test. Start building your own and find out how much more effective your ad campaigns can be.

Ticketfly partners, watch your email inbox for the next installment of the FlyTips newsletter. What, you’re not working with us? Maybe it’s time to fix that.

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