Marketers have always been interested in finding new and better ways to target their audiences. In the past, this has meant targeting people based on their age, gender, location, and interests.
However, many marketers are still not utilizing the power of look-a-like audiences. As advertising platforms continue to restrict standard targeting options, look-a-like audiences will become increasingly important for advertisers to reach the right audiences to grow their businesses.
A lookalike audience is a targeting option that finds people most similar to those who have engaged with your ad. Although this may not be anything new for more seasoned marketers, there have been updates that could increase the capabilities of this targeting option soon.
We'll dive into why look-a-like audiences will be significant to marketing strategies in 2022 and why they work better than standard targeting.
Firstly, What is a Look-A-Like Audience?
When setting up an ad campaign on Facebook (or other advertising platforms), there would be two types of targeting options. One option is "standard targeting," which allows advertisers to select a set of people based on demographics such as age, location, and gender.
The other option is "lookalike audiences," allowing advertisers to find users similar to those already engaged with their business. The audience will be mostly made up of the same types of people, but only the strongest signals (insights into how much users love a brand) will be carried over from those who have previously engaged with the ad.
These audiences more closely resemble the people you want because look-a-like audiences are usually based on insights obtained from your website traffic or uploaded data. They are also more effective because they are created based on the people most likely to engage with your ad and buy your products.
What Makes Look-A-Like Audiences More Effective Than Standard Targeting?
The main reason look-a-like audiences are more effective than standard targeting is that they're built from insights into how much people love a brand. If someone shares the same interests as those who have engaged with your ad, there's a chance they will also buy your product or service.
However, it's not just shared interests that make look-a-like audiences more effective. They are also more likely to buy your product because these people are already familiar with what you do and have shown interest in similar brands.
This means that look-a-like audiences are more effective for target marketing and increase the likelihood of conversions.
Custom Audiences Vs. Look-A-Like Audiences
Many times people confuse custom audiences and look-a-like audiences. However, they are two different things.
A custom audience can be created by uploading a list of contacts or email addresses to Facebook, allowing advertisers to reach specific people with their ads. Custom audiences are usually used for remarketing purposes because these are the people who have already engaged with your site or product.
Essentially, you're sending ads to people who are already familiar with your brand. You can create an audience based on users who have purchased something from your site or clicked on a link in your email marketing campaign. Since these people already like your product, they are the ones most likely to buy it.
Custom audiences work well for advertisers who want to get additional conversions or engagement from people they already know.
Although custom audiences are great for increasing conversions, they don't provide a way to reach and expand your audience. This is where look-a-like audiences come in.
Lookalike audiences allow advertisers to expand their reach and find new people similar to those who have already shown interest in the brand. Look-a-like audiences can be created from custom audiences, website traffic, app activity, and ad engagement.
Although lookalike audiences are usually based on insights obtained from previous engagements (i.e., custom audiences), it's not required to create them–the primary purpose is to find new people similar to those you feel are most likely to convert.
Why Are Look-A-Like Audiences Going To Be Huge In 2022?
There are plenty of reasons why look-a-like audiences will be huge in 2022, but here's just a few.
Facebook continues to place more restrictions on standard targeting. In the past, advertisers could select who their ads would be shown to based on a wide range of demographics and interests. Now, there are limitations on age ranges, categories, interests, and locations.
Facebook made this change because many people believe that online advertising fuels division in society. This decision also makes it more likely for marketers to create more authentic ads.
The future of Facebook marketing is mainly uncertain, but what we do know is look-a-like audiences are more effective than standard targeting.
Data has always been the lifeblood of marketers because it provides insights into human behavior that helps marketers create better ads, target the right people, and ultimately increase conversions.
As Facebook continues to polish its look-a-like audience tool, many more brands will find value in these audiences because they are more effective than standard targeting.
How to Leverage and Utilize Look-A-Like Audiences?
The overarching theme here is that look-a-like audiences will be huge in 2022. There are several ways to leverage look-a-like audiences, including using them with custom audiences or standard targeting.
Leveraging Look-A-Like Audiences With Custom Audiences
It's possible to create a lookalike audience based on your information about people who have already converted—for example, customers who made a purchase or registered for a webinar.
By targeting people like those that have already converted with ads, you can help increase conversions by sending ads to those most likely to buy from your brand. This helps put your brand/product in front of new people similar to those who already know your brand.
There may be similarities with previous customers that you are not aware of, which is why look-a-like audiences are great for expanding your reach.
Utilizing Look-A-Like Audiences in Your Business
First, you'll want to analyze your data from the individuals you're already reaching if you want to start utilizing look-a-like audiences. Decide what other information you know about them–their location, age range/demographics, and interests.
Once you've compiled this information, it's time to create look-a-like audiences based on lists of people who have converted or shown interest in your brand before. You can then use look-a-like audiences to expand your reach beyond those who have already converted.
At the same time, it's possible to combine data from several sources, including first touch attribution data and customer records, to create more accurate look-a-like audiences.
Marketers should also test their look-a-like audiences by dividing them into smaller segments and determining which are most effective. This allows you to see if certain aspects of your business work better with different types of people.
Using Look-A-Like Audiences in 2022
In 2022, look-a-like audiences will be a crucial part of online marketing for many brands because they help you target similar people to those who have already converted.
This is much more effective than standard targeting. Facebook's restrictions on standard targeting will continue to make it harder for marketers in the future.
With this being the case, there will be greater demand for look-a-like audiences because they overcome some of Facebook's restrictions.
The big question for marketers is whether they are currently utilizing look-a-like audiences to their full potential?