Targeting For FB Ads : Lookalike Audience vs. Detailed Targeting

Hi everyone, hope all is well.

I know John recently wrote in the forum that he phased out using the lookalike audience for FB Ad targeting in favor of detailed targeting of behaviors/interests/demographics because of some issues with uploading the SAS Bizopp Buyers List…

I actually was able to successfully upload the Buyers List list to create the FB lookalike audience for SAS - so I am wondering if it’s a good idea to go ahead and run an ad for the look alike audience along with the ad targeting the interests/behaviors/demographics using the same ad video and copy? Perhaps a split test between the two?

Hope that makes sense. I’d appreciate any feedback or suggestions.

~ Rob


Hi @robalta! I would suggest setting up 2 campaigns, one with your lookalike audience, one with other targeting. Keep everything else the same - ad copy, image/video, budget - and compare the two campaigns over the course of a week or whatever your budget allows.


Hey Andy - thanks for the response!

I’ll do what you suggested. Also, is it best to use the FB ad video and copy provided in the resources section under ad swipes just as they are? I’ve read several posts on here talking about using different ad copy, landing/presell page copy, using different videos or images, etc… just got a bit confused with that.

Hey @robalta! Personally, I like to test and experiment until I am happy with the results. Even if it’s a campaign I’ve run dozens of times, anytime I’m launching a new campaign, I will split test ad copy and images.

Hi Robert,

Just curious (and if you don’t mind sharing), how did your split test workout between the Look-a-Like audience and John’s detailed audience targeting? I am new to the SAS squad and just like you, I am not sure which direction to go for audience targeting. Hoping to learn from your experience!



I have a follow-up question to this topic. If we add a lookalike audience, should we remove or not use the targeting settings (for example, locations, detailed targeting (interests/behaviors)) that were shown in the targeting video?

What I did was duplicate the original campaign in Facebook and just wanted to change the targeting to use the custom lookalike audience, and leave everything else the same.

If I modify any of the fields such as gender, languages, etc, after adding the custom audience, it will change the potential reach. I was expecting that the custom audience would supersede any of the other targeting settings.

Thank you

There are two types of split tests. One is a campaign split test. In this split test, you run the identical ad and vary the audience. Thus, you will set up one campaign with targeting and another campaign with a lookalike list. Everything else is the same. Watch the results closely for a week. The second type of split testing is on an ad by ad basis. In this case, you can split test every aspect of the ad from headlines, images/videos, url, link description and text. This allows you to find out which elements of your ad are producing the best results. I use some sophisticated third party tools outside of FB to manage this simply and efficiently. If you are on a tight budget, you will have to keep things simple and manual until you can afford to scale a little.