Facebook Audience Insights: Learn About Those Connected to Your Business

Facebook Audience Insights

Facebook’s ad targeting is incredible. You can target those who have provided an email address or visited your website. You can also target people based on lifestyle and buying histories.

But what if you want to learn more about your current customers or fans? Or what if you want to learn more about certain groups of people on Facebook?

These are the powerful things that you can do with Audience Insights. When you learn more about these groups, you can apply this information to further refine your messaging and ad targeting.

Facebook breaks Audience Insights down into four steps, and we’ll use that same structure for this blog post:

  • Build: Create Audience Insights based on Facebook users, your fans or Custom Audiences
  • Find: Narrow your audience based on demographics and behaviors
  • Compare: Learn about things like the lifestyle, education level and job title of your audience
  • Target: Save your audience to use it for later for ad targeting

Access Audience Insights

Facebook Audience Insights Access

Facebook is rolling out Audience Insights to all admins. It can be found as a menu item on the left side of your Ads Manager.

Click it!

1. Build

Facebook Audience Insights Create New

Upon clicking the Audience Insights menu item or clicking on “Create New” at the top of Audience Insights, you’ll get a dialog that looks like the screen capture above.

Tell Facebook where you want to start:

  • Everyone on Facebook
  • People Connected to Your Page
  • A Custom Audience

This is essentially just a shortcut to guide you through the process. Truth is that you could narrow your audience in this manner by starting from scratch and using the filters on the left side.

Still, this is good for new users. Choose “Everyone on Facebook” to learn more about the typical Facebook user. Then view your fans before experimenting with individual Custom Audiences.

You can do a ton of filtering to learn more about groups on Facebook, including those connected to you (but not required). Those filters are found in step 2…

2. Find

Facebook Audience Insights Find 1

You can filter your audience on the left hand side based on the following:

  • Custom Audience
  • Location
  • Age and Gender
  • Interests
  • Connections
  • Advanced (Demographics and Behaviors)

Here’s an overview of each…

Custom Audiences: View Insights on any of your current Custom Audiences. This, of course, includes email lists, phone number lists, UID lists and Website Custom Audiences you’ve previously created.

Location: Add countries or cities to further refine your results.

Age and Gender: You guessed it. You can narrow down your results by age and gender.

Interests: Focus only on people who have particular interests. What is available here is the same as what’s available within Interests targeting when creating an ad.

Facebook Audience Insights Find 2

Connections: Break down the people connected (or not connected) to your page, app or event.

Advanced: This is the good stuff! Start filtering by the following information:

  • Behaviors: Same found in advanced ad targeting
  • Language
  • Relationship Status: Single, In a Relationship, Engaged, Married
  • Education: High School, College, Grad School
  • Work: Job Titles and Office Types
  • Financial: Income and Net Worth
  • Home: Home Type, Home Ownership and Home Value
  • Market Segments: Ethnic Affinity, Generation and Household Composition
  • Parents: Age of Child
  • Politics (US): Conservative, Liberal, Non-Partisan
  • Life Events: Away From Family, New Job, etc.
  • Device Owners

3. Compare

Within the main body of Audience Insights, you can view your results in six main categories:

  • Demographics
  • Page Likes
  • Location
  • Activity
  • Household
  • Purchase

Compare your audience to the typical Facebook user. I’ve run Audience Insights for anyone with interests in Jon Loomer Digital, Social Media Examiner, Mari Smith and Amy Porterfield (all within the US).


View the composition of your audience based on Age and Gender…

Facebook Audience Insights Demographics Age and Gender


Facebook Audience Insights Demographics Lifestyle

Relationship Status and Education Level…

Facebook Audience Insights Demographics Relationship Status and Education Level

and Job Title…

Facebook Audience Insights Demographics Job Title

Page Likes:

View the composition of your audience based on the Top Categories of pages liked…

Facebook Audience Insights Page Likes Top Categories

And actual pages liked…

Facebook Audience Insights Page Likes


View the top Cities, Countries and Languages of your audience…

Facebook Audience Insights Locations


See how your audience compares to the typical Facebook user in terms of activities on Facebook…

Facebook Audience Insights Activity

Including the devices they use…

Facebook Audience Insights Activity Device


How much income does your audience bring in? Do they rent or own their home?

Facebook Audience Insights Household Income Ownership

How many people live in the household, and what is the value of their home?

Facebook Audience Insights Household Size Home Market Value

How do they tend to spend money? With cash or credit cards?

Facebook Audience Insights Household Spending Methods


You can view how your audience’s purchase behaviors compare to the typical Facebook user regarding retail and online…

Facebook Audience Insights Purchase Retail Online

View what they purchase at a high rate…

Facebook Audience Insights Purchase Behavior

And what type of vehicle they may be in the market for…

Facebook Audience Insights Purchase Vehicle

4. Target

Great, you have all of this info… But now what??

First, you can save an audience for later use by clicking the Save link at the top…

Facebook Audience Insights Save

Later, you can access that saved audience by clicking the Open link at the top.

More importantly, though, you can use it in ad targeting! Within Power Editor, any audience you save here will then appear within Power Editor under Saved Target Groups.

Facebook Audience Insights Saved Target Group

If you’ve ever used this feature before, you know how useful it is! When creating an ad, simply click the Use Existing Targeting Group button during the Audience step…

Facebook Audience Insights Ad

Facebook will then pre-fill targeting based on your Audience settings. Simple!

How to Use Audience Insights

We’ll get into these details more on a later date. But know the possibilities here are endless. Break down audiences who are your current fans, buying customers or fans of your competitors. What do you learn from these audiences?

Take this information to target in new and unique ways. Experiment!

Your Turn

Have you experimented with Audience Insights? What results are you seeing?

Let me know in the comments below!

  • http://www.meggle.com.au Stephen Esketzis

    Fantastic tool no doubt rolled out by Facebook.

    The only thing is after finding out about 3rd party software out there like ID scrapers and sites such as Fan Harvest which can target the ACTIVE portion of those competing pages (even narrow down right to the engagement on a single post!) it really means that competitors could be using those as a means of reaching your most precious active audience.

    However a quality post none the less Jon!

    What are you thoughts on those 3rd party sites as mentioned above? Do you use them to capture the engaged fans of other pages? Or perhaps target pages which may not appear in Audience Insights because their following is too small?


    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      I’ve been hearing rumblings of such sites getting shut down. They violate Facebook terms, and I do not use them.

      • Lillian2365
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  • Grant Perry

    Nice article as always. I’ve just got it and loving it. Very interesting and some powerful insights into affinity, behavior etc.

    The lifestyle segments are interesting but I can’t see an explanation for what some of them mean. For example “Established Elite” and “Apple Pie Families” and “Corporate Clout” and “Full Steaming” are some of the top for my paying customers. But what exactly do they mean….any idea where to find a description?

  • http://beta21.circussocial.com Avtar Ram Singh

    Any idea when these will be available to everyone? I don’t see it in my menu. :(

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Based on responses I’ve seen, most people have it now. So probably very soon!

  • Guest

    This is amazing and I can already see it in my dashboard, but I think the data is only available for the US, isn’t it? Would be good to know when it will be available for Europe as well, do you have any more information on that? Thank you

    • http://jonloomer.com/blog Jon Loomer

      Not all of the data, but yes, much of the data comes from Partner Categories which are only available in the US. No ETA on expansion.

  • Roscoe

    Great information to truly drill down with.

  • Melissa Witmer

    My page has around 1200 fans. Facebook says this isn’t large enough to provide insights. All of my custom audiences are the same size. Any tips for those of us starting with smaller fan bases?

    • https://www.elance.com/s/scott-benson/ Scott Benson

      It seems like the insights only come from how many “monthly active people” in your audience, which may be below the threshold for smaller pages.

      I tried to use a lookalike audience made from a small custom audience (1,700), assuming that the insights for the lookalike would be reasonably close to the small audience.

      No go. It doesn’t look like lookalikes can be used with Audience Insights, at least not yet. Has anyone else had success with it?

  • http://socialmediacurator.com/ Mtn Jim Fisher

    sounds quite daunting…can’t wait for your “how to” posts. :-)

    • http://www.karenhenry.com Karen Henry

      +1 Jim!

  • Sonia Costa

    Jon, great post, as usual.
    I have a problem: I don’t have the option “a custom audience” on step 1 > Build
    Why is this happening, since I have many custom audiences created. Any help? Thanks

  • naguakkina

    Hi, it’s a great information very interested till end of the post , thank you make money online

  • http://dan.cx/ Daniel Lo Nigro

    You didn’t mention it in the article, but Audience Insights has a “Create Ad” button at the top-right that lets you go to either Power Editor or Create Flow to create a new ad with the audience pre-selected.

  • http://goldenstarlearningcenter.com/ Susan Kay Daniels

    Awesome article. Detailed and easy to understand. This is good reference material.

  • http://www.antoniocalero.com/ Antonio Calero

    For the very first time since I started following your blog over 2 years ago… I have a Facebook feature before you (or everyone else) do!!! :)

    I’ve been using this for the past 2 weeks and have seen fantastic results not only on advertising campaigns, but also when creating content for Pages. As you mentioned, now Pages are capable of adapting their content not just to their audience demographics (we had this info before), but base on their behaviour.

  • Matt Donnelly

    OMG OMG!

    JON IT’S ABNORMAL TO HAVE A CLICK THROUGH RATE OF 85% RIGHT? I mean I’ve only spent 11 cents so far it’s been put only in front of 7 people and 6 of the 7 have liked it????

    I LITERALLY had to wash my eyes out when I seen that HAHA

    • http://www.pierrelechelle.com Pierre Lechelle

      I’m sorry to say that but you don’t have enough data to take conclusions yet. If you want to be really significant you’ll have to wait for a 100 clicks ;)

      • Matt Donnelly

        Haha you were exactly right. Because it immediately went down to like 10% click through rate after a few hours now it’s rounded out to about 6%

  • oded

    Can I use Lookalike on saved group from audience insights?

  • Avraham Niv

    Great info, I have been using it for 2 days now (and waiting for it for nearly three years).
    One more thing that is possible is to see where (geografic location) there is no fit between your targetted audience and the average Facebook user and to exclude this locations and so you don’t waste impressions.
    I wish “excluding” was possible in more targeting options in Facebook (I know of geografic based, placement based (mobile, desktop etc.) and custome audience based exclusion option).
    Thanks again

  • Iris

    Great article, but how can I buy the fans of competitors? Thanks.

  • Mary Jaksch | A-List Blogging

    Good, super useful post! I find myself coming to your blog more and more, Jon :-)

    There is something I don’t understand about audiences, especially about website visitor custom audiences. I’ve compared the growth of one of my FB Website audiences per day (over 2,200) with what Google Analytics (150). That just doesn’t compute, does it? Any suggestions on why there is this huge discrepancy?

  • Dave Duke

    Jon – the save function doesn’t seem to be working as of last night… are you noticing the same thing?

  • YevP

    I’m a bit confused. Wouldn’t this tool be a lot more useful if Facebook filled it in based on who is liking your page, since presumably, those are your customers?

  • Maya Traykova

    Really annoying that it’s still not rolled out in the UK.

  • Pablo Arias

    Not available in Argentina yet. Hope it roll out soon!

  • Christof66

    If you’re outside the US you can activate Audience Insights by going to the top right hand drop down arrow and change ‘language settings’ to English (US). I’m in Hong Kong right now and can’t really do too much with it when I target Hong Kong Facebook users through the tool. Still, its very powerful!

    • MalaysiaBoy

      thank you sir. I got it now :D

  • Christof66

    Facebook has just rolled out the ability to target Expats (very useful for me here in Hong Kong!) http://allfacebook.com/ad-targeting-friends-of-expats_b135157

  • http://missdriftedsnowwhite.com/ Miss drifted Snow White

    Any idea when this will be rolled out to everyone? I still don’t have it (UK-based)

  • Dan Quinn

    Does Facebook have different ad managers for a business page and a community page? I cannot find audience insights on my community page.

  • http://www.pnitas.es Francisco Guerrero Galan

    Hi Jon and rest of the people!
    Im writing you cause cannot find a solution to this.
    Im based in Spain, so i started usinf Insights few months ago. Its a great and powerfull tool i cannot enjoy 100% cause few weeks ago i realized that in the “CONNECTIONS” section i cannot choose anything.
    I mean, when i click on it, nothing happens, cannot choose my fan page.
    I have tried it with different computers, accounts, browsers.. and always the same problem.
    Any of you people have this problem too?

    PS. Thanks a lot for your work and sharing it, im learning a lot :-)

  • Lera Asher


    I would also suggest you TopFan app: http://applodis.com/apps/topfan

    Application for determination of the most active page and group subscribers on Facebook. Rating is based on likes, comments and shares that fans do on community pages per month, year or a chosen period.

    Top fan benefits:
    – increased activity and, consequently, the number of active subscribers;
    – opportunity to brand applications;
    – fine tuning and blacklist availability;
    – daily rankings update.


  • http://www.thatdudeyouknow.com Ryan

    Just commenting out loud:
    1. I’m looking to drive people to a Snapchat account. On this account I do some european soccer analysis, show highlights and talk a tiny bit of sh*t.
    2. This is my first go at using Audience Insights. I chose, what I would consider to be, like-minded people.
    3. For my audience I selected 19-26 males, Interests = UEFA Champions League (major soccer tourney), who also have a college education.
    4. This tell me there are 300-350k monthly actives.
    5. Activity wise = 43 pages liked (vs 19 avg) 15 post likes (vs 8) and 13 ads clicked (vs 7). I’m not sure how good those numbers are, but I’m just using Facebook’s average as a benchmark. That good practice?
    6. Also, 61% of this audience are mobile users (vs 41% of avg FB users).
    7. I believe this is a solid audience, especially because of the mobile users, which will make my ad’s subject matter (driving adds to another mobile app’s platform). I can’t do direct conversion with this ad, but I bet I will be able to get cheap clicks. My audience should be relevant, and if I run my add only on mobile, I think I will see some conversions (which I can only measure manually, but checking inside of my Snapchat app).
    8. My add will be a “video” of my Snapchat “Story” (hopefully, if I have targeted well, this will make sense to this audience). I’ll have short copy saying something like “Yo, I chill on Snapchat and talk soccer. Check out my latest story.” Then in the comment section of this ad, I will right “Click the link for my snapcode–>”link to imager”. (for anybody not familiar with Snapchat, I think this will be the most effective way. You add people in Snapchat by screenshoting the snapcode, then opening Snapchat and scanning it in. So I believe I NEED to give them a picture.

    I’m excited to see my little results. If anybody reads this, or is interested in how it turned out, feel free to reply or hit me up on twitter (@kovachr).