What’s The Deal With Facebook Audience Insights?
We know that it was a free tool from Facebook that helped you learn more about your target audience’s interests on the platform.
And we know that it “went away” in July 2021.
So what now? Well, Facebook Audience Insights was replaced with Business Suite Insights.
This is what it looks like today.
So in this post, we’re going to walk you through the new version of Facebook Audience Insights.
And at the end of this post, we’re sharing our 3 takeaways on if this tool is better or worse than the old version…
…as well as how you can utilize it as a small business owner.
What Is Facebook Audience Insights?
“Facebook Audience Insights gives you aggregate information about two groups of people—people connected to your Page and people on Facebook…
…so you can create content that resonates and easily find more people like the ones in your current audience.”
It gives you a demographics overview, helps you learn about people’s interests, hobbies and lifestyle.
All of which help you better design successful Facebook ads that are centered around your audience’s likes and desires.
The New Facebook Audience Insights
Make sure you’re logged into your Facebook account and then you can head to https://www.facebook.com/business/insights/tools/audience-insights…
…and then click go to Audience Insights.
You’ll be brought to this screen which is the Business Suite insights we talked about earlier.
Now you can see on the left-hand side we have an overview tab, results, content and then audience.
For today’s post, we’re going to focus on the audience.
So if you’re new to this screen, you might get some pop-ups like these.
You can read through those for some guidance on the new Business Suite Insights as a whole.
Otherwise, the first thing you’ll want to do is make sure your Facebook business page is selected.
And if your Instagram account is connected, it will automatically select that as well.
So you can view the data on this screen for a potential audience or for your current audience.
Let’s start by looking at a potential audience since that’s what Facebook automatically selects upon landing on this page.
This will update in real-time as you change different settings on this page, along with all of the other charts we’re going to look at on this page.
If you click the blue filter button, you can add the:
- age range,
- interests, and
…of any audience you want to research.
And as you type interests in, it will suggest more to you.
Once you’ve got an audience that you want to analyze nailed down, the first chart you can look at is for age and gender.
If you’re looking at this chart for your current audience, it can give you insight into who is currently finding your account relevant enough to follow.
Thus, helping you better hone in on what your ideal follower looks like.
And if you’re looking at it for a potential audience, it can tell you what the demographics look like for the interests and other filters you’ve selected.
This will show you either where the majority of your followers reside…
…or where the majority of people with the interests you’ve selected reside, followed by top countries.
This shows the top Facebook pages that your audience or potential audience likes.
This can give you insight into what other topics or hobbies are appealing to your audience.
Even if it isn’t directly related to your product or service, the more you know about your audience or potential audience, the better.
The first thing you’ll see is how many Facebook page likes you have and how many Instagram followers you have.
And it breaks down both of those audiences by age and gender in the first chart.
Beneath that, you’ll see the top cities and countries where your followers live.
And that’s it!
There’s not as much to look at on this page, but we made a whole post on Instagram analytics…
…and Facebook page analytics which can give you more insight into your current followers.
But the main use of Facebook Audience Insights in this context is more so to find new people who are likely to engage with you.
Thus, you’ll probably spend more time in the potential audience tab.
So let’s jump back to that tab for a second because there are a couple more things we want to show you.
When you click the filter tab, you can add more than one interest to analyze, which will usually make your audience size bigger.
If you’ve got an audience put together that you’re interested in testing out…
…you can hit the blue Create audience button to save this as an audience in your ads manager.
Or, you can hit the blue Create ad button to go ahead and start the ad creation process using this audience.
And if you need to share all of this data with a team of people or something, you can also export all of this information if you need to.
Takeaways On The New Facebook Audience Insights
So now that we’ve walked you through the new Facebook Audience Insights, let’s talk about 3 of our takeaways as a digital marketer.
As well as how the new version stands up against the old version.
But before we do, just a quick reminder to check out our new social media ads training course today to master the art of social media advertising.
Takeaway #1: We don’t think this new tool is better than the old one.
That is because of a lot of the new privacy restrictions with the iOS 14 update and such, there are more limitations, not less.
If you ever used the old Facebook Audience Insights tool, you know what we’re talking about.
The main use of the old Audience Insights was to gather more data about your target audience…
…and this new tool is not as efficient at doing that.
You may think, “Well it still lets you see the top pages that your target audience is interested in!”
…But does it really? Take a look at this.
These are the top pages for a potential audience where we have not entered in any interests or age, location, or anything yet.
We see Tasty, Walmart, Amazon, Target, Facebook app, etc.
Now let’s go back and make the location the United States.
We’re going to make the minimum age 25 and add interest in digital marketing.
When we scroll back down and look, the top 5 pages are exactly the same.
And a few of the latter pages are the same as well, just all in a different order.
Let’s go back and change the interest to Sunday Brunch. Same thing.
Let’s try mechanical engineering, a totally different niche. Tasty, Walmart, Amazon, Facebook app are all still on the list.
The top page of Donald Trump was also already on this list earlier too, just in a lower position.
The problem we’re seeing here is that it’s not really showing you pages that are specific to your audience.
These top pages are so popular that they’re likely to be liked by a vast number of any target audience.
So before you hit the back button thinking, “okay then why did you show me how to use Audience Insights?”
Let us clarify that we’re not saying this new Facebook Audience Insights tool is completely useless.
We think it’s at least worth looking at, especially the pages lower on the list as those seem to change a little more with the different interests.
And you might have better luck with this tool if you can find an interest that is really specific and niche to your product or service.
But we would advise that you look at the base interests for your location first.
And then, compare those to the top pages it gives you as you put in different interests to see which ones you can kind of discard.
That’s because they’re staying the same no matter what you put in and which interests are actually noteworthy.
You can then click on those pages to see what they’re about and what kind of content they post…
…to determine what aspects of their page are interesting to your target market.
But ultimately, our takeaway here is to look at the top pages for your potential audience with a grain of salt.
Takeaway #2: Study your current audience, if you’ve never done that before.
When it comes to your current audience, we would advise you to study the common gender, age group, and locations following you.
A lot of new advertisers will start broad and cast a wider net with their targeting because they don’t really know who to target yet.
For instance, maybe you’ve been boosting posts to get more post engagement and you’re targeting the United States as your location.
But maybe in your Facebook Audience Insights, you see the majority of your followers are from Atlanta, GA.
You could then alter your post engagement campaign to solely target Atlanta, and you may see a lower cost per engagement as a result.
Because you’re no longer wasting ad spend delivering to an audience or location that isn’t responding to your ad.
The same concept can be applied to gender as well.
Your current followers are setting the bar as to “what’s working” when it comes to getting new followers.
So we would just keep a pulse on your current audience to always be on top of any patterns, if there are any.
Takeaway #3: We would suggest using this tool in combination with the Ads Manager itself.
That’s because the “top pages” feature seems a little faulty.
In our Facebook ads targeting post, we walk through every single targeting option Facebook provides, including how to target by interest.
When you type in interest in Ads Manager in the ad set level, it will give you a list of more targeting options to choose from.
And you can narrow your targeting by saying in order to be delivered this ad, someone must be interested in this and this, not either-or.
So you can just get in there and type in some ideas to see what kind of niche targeting options Facebook suggests and offers.
We think this will help guide you in your advertising a little more than if you were to just solely rely on the new Facebook Audience Insights tool.
And if you want to take your Facebook ads to the next level, work with our Facebook advertising agency today.
Contact us at 404-596-7925 to get started.