How to Set up Facebook Pixel Audiences.
Facebook Ads are great. They’re usually cheaper than Google Ads (if you do them right) and you can refine your targeting to an incredible degree.
What is Pixel?
Pixel is a free Facebook feature. You have a Pixel ID which you can install into your website. Once it’s installed it will track who has visited your website. When you run your Facebook ads, you will be able to use the Pixel data to advertise to people who have visited certain areas of your website, or people who behave like those people.
You can send one ad to people who have visited your home page within the last week, another to people who have visited it within the last month, and another to people who have visited your contact page. There are many more options!
To install Pixel, you need to go to the ad manager section of your Facebook account and go to settings to find your code. It will say “Pixel ID” and be followed by a long numerical code.
If you have a WordPress website, you do not need to put the code manually into your site. You can instal a plugin, I’ve used PixelYourSite. All you need to do is copy and paste the Pixel ID into the plugin and tick the boxes you’d like to track through your Pixel.
Pixel takes a while to collect enough data to be useful. If you have a high traffic website, this may only take a couple of hours. But if you don’t you’ll be wanting to install your Pixel as soon as possible.
Even if you do not intend to use Pixel in the near future, it’s still going to be of benefit to you to have it installed, so it’s there collecting data for your future use.
All in all, installing Pixel should take less than 30 minutes.
Creating a Pixel audience.
Once you have your Pixel set up, you can go ahead and create the audiences you’d like to retarget to.
You need to go to the Audiences section of your Facebook Ad Manager:
Then click on “custom audiences”.
A box will pop up that looks like this.
You can create an audience based on your existing data list by selecting “Customer File”. Perhaps people who have signed up to your newsletter. But today, we’re concentrating on Pixel. To create an audience based on your Pixel, select “Website Traffic”.
Today I would like to create a Pixel audience for people who have visited any of my blogs about persuasion techniques. This way I can advertise new blogs to them about this particular subject and know for sure that they have already expressed an interest in persuasion.
To do this I need to A) make sure the URLs on my blogs are properly labelled so I can easily retarget via subject. And B) select URL “contains” so I am selecting this keyword in general, and not an exact page.
If I wanted to create a Pixel audience who has visited a specific page, like my contact form all I need to do is select “URL Equals” and then copy in my contact form URL. This way I know I am only advertising to people who have expressed an interest in contacting me.
Time scales.I don’t want to advertise to anyone who’s viewed my website ever. Thankfully I can choose to advertise to people who have visited my site within a specific time frame. I may choose to advertise to people who have visited my site within the last day, or the last 30 days.
I can create different audiences for people who have recently visited and ones for people who haven’t visited in a month. For example, if I was running an e-commerce store, I could advertise to people who had abandoned cart within the last few days. If they hadn’t done any shopping on the site for a month, I could refresh their memory with a new special offer to encourage them to come back to the site.
Excluding people from my audience.
Advertisements can be annoying and I don’t want to irritate people who have already contacted me and have either become a current customer, or found out I wasn’t for them. So to exclude people who have already contacted me I need to click on “exclude people” and then enter the URL I want excluding, which is the “success” page on my website after someone fills in the form.
I can exclude people who have visited certain pages on any Pixel audiences I create.
After all this, all I need to do is name my audience and hit save.
Creating lookalike audiences.
After I’ve created my audience, I have the option to either create an ad for my audience, or create a lookalike audience.
A lookalike audience uses the pixel data from your chosen web pages and creates a similar audience. The people in the lookalike audience are people who Facebook deems to be similar in demographics and behaviour to the people in your Pixel audience.
You can refine these people by location, to make sure that they are in the place you do business in. Don’t miss this out unless you do business globally! Otherwise, you will be wasting money.
You can also refine your audience by the % of people who are the most similar.
It’s probably wise to keep it to a 1% lookalike, so you can be sure you are advertising to the most similar people.
Now you have your audiences.
When you’re creating your ad, you can use the Pixel audience you created to create new ads, boost posts, get more page likes and all the other functions of Facebook Ads.
No audience is going to be 100% accurate.
Just like any other form of advertising, not everyone you advertise to is going to be your target audience. While Facebook Pixel makes advertising a lot more targeted, the fact of the matter is you may be advertising to competitors and people who have accidentally clicked on your website.
Which ads should I deliver and which audiences should I use?
For a best practices guide to setting up your Facebook ads with Pixel click here.