Facebook Lookalike Ads: When And How To Use Them?


“Xou Xou: This mobile phone holder business grew its cross-border sales when it used Facebook dynamic ads for broad audiences—and saw 1.8X higher sales when it added lookalike audiences to the mix.” ~ Facebook case studies

Facebook lookalike ad feature is used to target people who are like your clients. 

Business owners go for this type of ad when:

  1.  their audience is already saturated with the company’s ads, in cases where your audience have seen your ad multiple times and in a non-responding mode to it.
  2.  their ads aren’t performing as they used to, which increases its cost, leaving you paying more money on the ad and still being far from achieving your goal.
  3.  they want to target the lookalike audience of their clients but on a different platform; say your business has an email list from your website and you want to target the lookalikes of these people but on Facebook.
    This feature gives you the freedom to connect with people on different platforms, and not any people at that but exactly those that represents your ideal customer persona.
  4.  you wish to scale your business forward and increase your client base; taking your business to a new level but limiting the risks of attracting non-ideal customers is one of the major benefits this feature offers. Allowing you to scale your business with lookalike almost guaranteed to purchase customers. 

Things to look for when making a lookalike ad:

1. When making a lookalike ad you need to base it on custom audience; basically the set of clients that you want the ad to reach their lookalikes.
Your chosen custom audience is a minimum of 100 people from the same country and we will explain further on the importance of that later on in this article, and based on the ad’s goal you choose the correlating audience.

You have options between the following to base your audience on: 

I. Using your own sources:

A-  Website Traffic:
This could be tracked by adding a pixel code to your website that links to Facebook. You can also segment this traffic on Facebook by page ; i.e. if you only want people who visited your checkout page per say.

B-  Customer List:
You can upload your customer list to Facebook or if you are using Mailchimp then you can link it to Facebook and the list will be imported from there.

C-  App Activity:
An app event is an action that takes place in your app or on your web page such as a person installing your app or completing a purchase. Facebook App Events allows you to track these events to view analytics, measure ad performance, and build audiences for ad targeting.” ~ Facebook Business

D- Offline Activity:
Activities that occurred with your customers in real life.

II. Using Facebook sources:

A- Video:
This could be specified by video interactions or people who watched 25% or 50%…etc.
Again this is based on your ad’s purpose.

B- Facebook lead form:
These are the people who filled in your lead form on Facebook if you have one set up.

C- Events:
If you have set up a code to track certain events on your website.
i.e : pressing the signup button.
This would be considered an event and the tracking code will link with Facebook in order for you to customize your audience based on these people if your ad’s target matches their persona.

D- Facebook page:
This could be any interactions happening on your page as the following:

2. Be careful when setting the ad’s country as you need to be specific on which country within your custom audience you prefer to focus on to avoid increasing the reach without it giving the desired results.

We gave notice earlier that the minimum number for custom audience is 100 people from each country this is necessary for you to target people from that country and you can add more than 1 country if your custom audience is big enough to allow you to do so.

3. When setting the ad’s reach the scale is from 1% to 10% with 1 being the closest match to your customers and 10 being the furthest match; so you need to be as close to 1% as possible for the ad to achieve its goal.

Also keep in mind that when increasing the reach further to 10% you risk overlapping with your own audience who already are saturated with your ads.


Lookalike Facebook ads is a great tool that features major benefits for business users.
Keep in mind to:
1- Identify your goal with the ad.
2- Form a custom audience that fits the ad’s goal.
3- Target countries that your custom audience is from.
4- Adjust the ad’s reach to reach ideal lookalike customers.

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