How to improve your Facebook Ads with Lookalike audiences

L O O K A L I K E  A U D I E N C E S


Have you built lookalike audiences yet?


You need to have the Facebook Pixel installed and then you are good to go. The pixel will need to have collected some data before it can realistically build out a seed audience to build a lookalike audience from. Best way to do this is run a Traffic campaign driving traffic to your website, maybe with an incentive in order to ‘season’ the pixel. Once this has happened, you can build audiences in Ad Manager under Audiences.


First you build a seed Custom audience and this can be done from:


✚Website visitors

✚Facebook or Instagram page fans, page, post or ad engagers (good  – post iOS14 update)

✚People who have viewed videos or engaged with posts or ads (good  – post iOS14 update)

✚Uploaded customer files like mailing lists (good  – post iOS14 update)

✚App activity

✚Event interest (good  – post iOS14 update)


Then you use this seed audience to build a new LAL audience – to do this you choose the country you want the audience from and the % of the countries audience – 1% being an audience that matches closest to your seed audience and this goes up to a very loose match of 10% (I recommend testing 3% and a 1% against each other)


This is a great way of finding a new COLD audience who look like your existing customer and should be tested alongside Interest-based ad sets to see what works best for your business.

For more bespoke help with this and improving your Facebook Ads results book a POWER HOUR from £97ph

Email me:  Susie

How to effectively communicate in the ‘new normal’ phase

We are now entering a new phase called the ‘new normal’ according to the press and our government, and it is important to address how we could be adapting the way we communicate on social media.


Negative language on social media

I see many social media posts still talking very negatively about the ‘crisis’ and these posts can add to the anxiety people may be feeling.

Businesses are using words like ‘crisis’, ‘surviving’, pandemic’, ‘killer, ‘outbreak’, ‘disaster’, ‘survival’, ‘disruptions’, ‘contagious’, ‘impacted’ to list a few I saw today and these words conjure up negative feelings which can reflect on the brand.


Be more human

Now is not the time for scare-mongering but for inspiring our customers and building a positive connection with them on social media.

It is important to put yourself into the mind of your customer and be calm and sensitive, showing kindness but also giving direction. Mari Smith, the ‘Queen of Facebook’ said last week at Atomicon 2020 that people are looking for ‘emotionally intelligent leaders’  – calm, a voice of reason and a good listener.

A brand should, therefore, be showing up on social media, being ‘more human’ and showing empathy.


Inspiring communications

So, let’s go back to the language we could use in social media during the ‘new normal’, phase.  It would be beneficial for brands to adopt a positive, inspirational, helpful tone during this time.

Posts can be conversational but it’s important to be careful with wit and humour as this can come across as dismissive of the situation we are all in.

Ideas of words and phrases that I feel reflect how we should communicate include as an example: ‘adapt’, ‘support’, ‘cope’, ‘stay connected’, ‘stand together’, ‘contribute’, ‘connect’, ‘play a role’, ‘navigate’, ‘respond’…

If you are offering an online service or your business is soon to open to the public having been closed, then you will want to reassure your customers using language like ‘virtual’, ‘contact-free’, ‘remote’, ‘downloadable’, ‘social distancing’.

Using these phrases shows you understand their concerns and as a brand, you are taking the situation seriously and respectfully.


Navigating the challenges

Whilst it is fine to still sell to our customers as people are still buying products, this is an area where we continue to need to be sensitive. Brands don’t want to be seen to be profiteering from the situation so care is needed with the language.

Brands also need to ease up on the urgency around offers – time-limited offers like ‘don’t miss out’ or ‘offer only for 24 hours’ add pressure on the consumer and their priorities may have changed during the lockdown and this may fall flat with them or cause anxiety.

If you find it a challenge to get the language and tone right on social media then why don’t you try to move your communication onto video posts or Lives? Your message is less likely to be misinterpreted if your customers can see your expression, hear your tone and feel your emotion.


Moving forward

I always say to my clients that a social media post should either ‘entertain, inspire or educate’  – I still stick by this, with the priority at the moment being, inspiring and educating your audience.

Corona Virus Lock-down Update

We are now just over a week into isolation in the UK and I finally have a moment to post on here between juggling client work, home-schooling and settling the family into our new way of life.

No one could ever have imagined the impact this virus would have and we find ourselves in a totally unplanned situation. Some businesses have been hugely affected with a shutdown and others are thriving, with a third group trying to find a new outlet for their services or products.

👩🏻‍💻We have all had to embrace technology like never before. People are getting their grandparents iPads and setting them up on Zoom over the phone – unheard of a month ago – they wouldn’t have even really tried it!

I want to be able to help my clients get through this period but also I want to add value to other businesses who I have come to know through social or helped in workshops.

If you need help setting yourselves up to deliver your services online or are going to use the time to get yourself up and running on a new social channel, then let me know how I can help.

Whilst I can and have the time, I am offering you some free advice so get in touch with me on email and we can set up a call. I also offer free social media tips and you can sign up here.

✨If you sell a product you can still dispatch or sell a service that you can do online, then Facebook Ads is a perfect way of reaching your ideal customer.

There are fewer people advertising currently and CPMs are lower with a good return on investment being seen in both e-comm and lead gen. I can either offer one-to-one sessions to help get you set up or I can manage your ads for you. It may be the difference between your business existing during this crisis or really thriving.

😓Sadly, I can’t hold my workshops in the Hive in Cranbrook at the moment and I am missing running them. But I am looking for interest in online workshops.

I don’t feel comfortable telling you that now is the perfect time to upskill as everyone has different circumstances, but I am looking at moving my workshops online as a natural progression for my business. I have done all of my social media retraining and Facebook Ads learnings online and it can be a great and supportive way to learn with the right course.

I would love to hear from you about online workshops and whether you would prefer ‘learn at your own pace’ or ‘online, live’ teaching if you were to embark on a course.

👯‍♀️Being at home with the kids has turned me into a TikTok addict – I am currently using it for my business and learning how it all works. It has 500m active monthly users and 41% of users are 16-24. But I am seeing tonnes of mums, dads and over 30’s on there – it really is fun.

If you are interested in learning more about how a business can use this platform, then shout (just don’t judge the dancing!!)

As we know ‘business as usual’ doesn’t really exist in these exceptional circumstances but rest assured, I am here, at home, ready to help if you need it.

Stay safe,




How to repurpose your content

“To find success with social media, you have to create a LOT of content”

👆Now, let’s file that statement under “things I no longer believe.”

Because in the last 12 months of managing social media for myself and businesses, I’ve realised quality content can be broken down and easily repurposed on other marketing platforms. 👏🏻

This has changed the way I schedule and plan my marketing and it saves me time. ⏰

So how do we do it?🤷🏻‍♀️

A long post can be turned into:

  1. a blog for your website
  2. the main content for an email to your subscribers
  3. bitesize chunks for posts on social media platforms
  4. an article on LinkedIn
  5. a guest post on a collaborative website
  6. a lead magnet for download on your website.

There are many ways of repurposing your valuable content beyond just writing one post so save time and think about where else you can use it.

When I started out in business, I spent ages scheduling my posts and trying to think up something different every day and when I felt uninspired, I just stopped posting. 🤨

By spending the time on one piece of engaging content and adapting it for each platform, you reach more people with less effort and have more time for looking after your customers and business – WIN | WIN

➡️I’d love to know what statement flies around your industry that you’d like to toss out ⬅️

All about Carousel Ads

C A R O U S E L  A D  C R E A T I V E

Time to move on from Facebook Ad targeting options to creative options. One of the most creative options is the carousel. With this you can showcase up to 10 images or videos within a single ad, each with its own link on ‘cards’.


It is perfect for showing off multiple images of products within your company or using the cards to create one creative by designing the cards so they flow into a big image. You can use it to tell a story or highlight your best features or products. Facebook enables you to easily add a brand card at the end.


Carousel ads are designed so you can tell a story so ensure you are using them creatively and think about this when planning the content. Include a strong CTA on each card and make the most of being about to have a different headline on each one. The benefit of carousel over collection ads is that they can be viewed on the desktop too.


Take a look at the Facebook page @carouselformat for some great examples – you can use it in most objectives except Engagement. I hope you have fun trying these out!

How to reach the right audience on Facebook Ads

A U D I E N C E   B U I L D I N G

It is crucial when running ads that you understand the audience you are trying to reach as well as your existing audience. If you are running the Facebook Pixel (and I hope you are) then you have the ability to build lookalike audiences from seed audiences of your existing fans.

To understand these fans and check they are aligned with your ideal audience or customer, use Google Analytics to check your web visitors and use Facebook and Instagram Insights to understand your seed audiences there.

You may find if you have been running lots of promotions or (!) bought Likes and Followers, that you have attracted people who are not your usual and ideal person. In this case, your seed audience may not be good enough to build a lookalike audience from.

But unless you check first, you won’t know.


How to get to know your Audience

A U D I E N C E   I N S I G H T S


Audience Insights is a tool within Ad Manager or Business Manager which gives you data about your audiences so you can examine them, plan interest-based campaigns and build relevant ads and campaigns.


You can understand:

  • your audience’s demographics
  • Page likes
  • location
  • language
  • in-depth Facebook activity information such as propensity to comment, like posts, share posts and ads they clicked on.

You can also put in an interest like ‘Frequent Travel’ and see what other pages the audience follows so you can build a reliable Interest-based audience.

Facebook Audience Insights

Try it! If you want to get into advanced Audience Building then I would highly recommend ConnectIO audience builder which I use for client campaigns.


👋🏻As always, if you would like help with your ads, either looking for someone with experience to take the burden away or some coaching to get you back on track then get in touch. I will offer a special series discount of 10% off any package if you quote SOCIALADS19


Online Marketing Checklist

2018 Christmas Online Marketing Checklist

For many small businesses, the holiday season can contribute a significant proportion of revenue to the total annual sales. It is therefore critical to get your online marketing right for this important time of year! Follow our online marketing checklist to get it right!

I really don’t want to be talking Christmas already, but many online retailers are already focused on this period and even beyond it.

With the right planning, the holiday period can be a huge success for your business and here are 5 steps to help you on your way.

Social media is one part of an online marketing plan and I will give you detailed tips to help with that but remember it is important to focus time on all parts of your online marketing.


1. Marketing Plan

Spend some time planning out the next few months – this will not be time wasted.

Focus on how much time and budget you have to put behind this seasonal push. If you plan to spend money on advertising, how much will your budget be and what platforms are best to reach your target audience? Plan your resources over the period and whether you need to recruit more help or outsource some work.

Spend some time setting some realistic and measurable goals for your business, basing them on previous holiday seasons where possible.


2. Email Marketing

Email marketing can be a great way of reaching your audience, but it is often over-used so ensure that your emails are targeted to segmented groups and, as with all marketing, relevant to your audience. If you have a customer database or email marketing list, make sure you are GDPR compliant when contacting them.


3. Website

If you are an online retailer, now is the time to tidy up your website, clean up your product catalogue and ensure everything is functioning correctly.

Conduct an audit of your website and work through repairing broken links and ensuring your SEO is up to date. Use relevant search terms in your content and ensure they appear in your tags and on the page.

Make sure your opening hours, contact details, returns information and delivery commitments are up to date and that the site images are reflecting the holiday season.


4. Blog & Content Creation

If you have a blog page, now is the time to write some interesting content for your website, especially before you get too busy with orders! This content can be used on social media posts to drive people to your site all through the months up to Christmas so use it to promote your products or ideas.

Think about producing gift guides for him/her/kids, beauty guides to get you through Christmas party season or holiday recipes. Create whatever content is most relevant for your business and which will add value to your customer.


5. Social Media

Christmas is a great time to engage with your audience and customer base. Inject some festive fun into your posts and make sure you are on top of increased activity on posts and on direct messages. Increasingly people are using social media as the main communication with retailers so make sure you check your notifications regularly. Social media, as you know can be time-consuming but is definitely a great way of getting your message and product information out to your customer base.


  • Focus on your target audience – make sure you know your customer inside-out. Check Google Analytics and Facebook Insights to fully understand your customer demographics and establish how people are finding or reaching your e-commerce website. Focus your time and budget on that audience and check you are using the right social media platforms for your business. If a platform isn’t driving sales but you like using it, you may be wasting important time over this festive period.


  • Plan your advertising – Work out your advertising budget and what products are best for you to promote based on popularity, stock levels and revenue opportunity.

Take time to test copy and creative for your ads so every penny is well spent.


  • Facebook Advertising – Check you have the Facebook Pixel installed on your website, so you can use the full targeting functionality in Facebook Advertising.

Set up custom and lookalike audiences on Facebook Advertising for different product sets and customer groups. Facebook Advertising can be used across Instagram and the wider Audience Network if you are looking to grow your reach.


  • Google Adwords – If you are using PPC advertising, increase your bids over the holiday period to ensure visibility and update keywords and copy to reflect relevant search terms.


  • Build a content calendar – plan your social media content around the key shopping dates and generate new interest in your products by planning a good mix of relevant created and curated content.

Share interesting content like gift guides and stress-free Christmas ideas to ensure your audience is not just bombarded with Christmas commercialism.

Think about running a Christmas competition to increase engagement around one of your best-selling items. Just be sure to check the platform rules around competitions and follow them.

Use your posts to keep people up to date with the latest products and generate interest in best-sellers and trending products.


  • Scheduling – Social Media posts can be planned ahead using one of the many scheduling tools out there. Write your posts in advance and have them ready to post when you know you will be busy. This will save you a lot of time and stress. If you have never used a scheduler, try Facebook’s own scheduling tool which is really easy to use. Other companies like Buffer, Hootsuite and ContentCal has free plans for entry-level users.


Key Shopping Days 2018:

Do you know the key dates in the run up to Christmas – I have compiled a list for you to plan around:

  • 1st October – Buy British Day. Launched by Best of Britannia in 2014 to promote British retailers and producers
  • 31st October – Hallowe’en. Now a larger retail day than Valentine’s Day
  • 23rd November – Black Friday. Historically a US shopping holiday and viewed as the start of the holiday shopping season.
  • 26th November – Cyber Monday. Another US shopping tradition after Thanksgiving, often used for sale hunting.
  • 1st December – Small Business Saturday. Celebrating and supporting small businesses.
  • 15th December – Free Shipping Day. To encourage online sales ahead of the last minute rush
  • 25th December – the Big Day. Often online sales are seen starting now.
  • 26th December – Boxing Day. Seen by the majority as the start of the sales on and offline.


By spending some time now on our festive online marketing checklist, you will be well on your way to a successful Christmas period for your business!

Grab yourself a festive tipple to get you in the mood and happy planning! I wish you a successful Christmas!


Susie Smith – Social Media Consultant

Recent Blog Posts

How to improve your Facebook Ads with Lookalike audiences

For many small businesses, the holiday season can contribute a significant proportion of revenue to the total annual sales. It is therefore critical to get your online marketing right for this important time of year! Follow our online marketing checklist to get it right! I really don’t want to be talking Christmas already, but many […]

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How to improve your Facebook Ads with a targeted Interest-Based Audience

For many small businesses, the holiday season can contribute a significant proportion of revenue to the total annual sales. It is therefore critical to get your online marketing right for this important time of year! Follow our online marketing checklist to get it right! I really don’t want to be talking Christmas already, but many […]

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For many small businesses, the holiday season can contribute a significant proportion of revenue to the total annual sales. It is therefore critical to get your online marketing right for this important time of year! Follow our online marketing checklist to get it right! I really don’t want to be talking Christmas already, but many […]

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Eat, sleep, iOS14, repeat.

For many small businesses, the holiday season can contribute a significant proportion of revenue to the total annual sales. It is therefore critical to get your online marketing right for this important time of year! Follow our online marketing checklist to get it right! I really don’t want to be talking Christmas already, but many […]

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Mama makes Network logo

Guest Social Media Blogger on Mama Makes Network

Mama makes Network logo

Mama Makes Network

I was really pleased to be invited to be a guest blogger for Mama Makes Network – a blog, community and events network for mamas with a creative side. I have been following them for a while and chatted in the virtual world and they wanted me to share some tips on how their followers could maximise their efforts on Instagram.

They offer great advice for creative mamas and host coffee mornings and creative workshops around London – be sure to follow them!


5 tips on how to rock Instagram

You can find my 5 tips on how to rock Instagram in my guest blog post which was published last month.

Are you using Instagram and are you making the most of all of their image and video features? As Instagram is one of the fastest growing social media networks and predicted to dominate the market by 2020, it’s time to find out how to step up your Instagram activity!

Find my article here:

Social Media Platforms

Reveal The Best Social Media Platforms For Your Business

So we all have our favourite social media platforms and as a social media consultant, I have fallen in and out of love with all of them over the last years. Although not sure I have ever loved Snapchat! But as a small business owner, how can you know the best platform for your business if you don’t use all of them?

It’s important to understand that the social media platform you like best for your personal use may not be the right one for your marketing effort for your small business.

In this blog, I would like to introduce you to the main platforms and give you some insights about them so you can see if they are right for your business.

Time to reveal the best social media platforms for your business


Facebook was founded in 2004 and is currently the largest platform with more than 1.7 billion active users. Originally called The Face Book and set up by Mark Zuckerberg and some Harvard friends as a university directory.
Now it has over 35 million users in the UK and the largest age demographic is the 55+ group accounting for 25% of the user base. 51% of active users are female and 54% of users access Facebook on their mobile only. Active users are pretty engaged, spending over 20 minutes each day on it. Video is very important on Facebook with 500m users watching a video every day. Facebook Messenger is bigger than WhatsApp, email and texting for communicating with friends and family.
Facebook has recently announced major changes to their newsfeed to try and increase engagement and improve the user experience. For businesses, this means Page posts are likely to be seen by no more than 1-1.5% of your followers and businesses really need to advertise to boost their reach, as organic growth is now harder than ever. Find out more about what you can do to improve your Facebook marketing here

User growth has dropped for the first time ever recently and Facebook will be working harder than ever to prevent a further loss of users, which may affect business Pages further. Facebook can be a bit of a slog for some businesses especially now as we are experiencing a drop in organic reach and having to spend money to reach customers. More time is needed to make posts more engaging for customers or make videos to stand out and more budget is needed to boost a declining organic growth.

Advertising on Facebook is pretty cost-effective and targeting is very detailed, meaning it is relatively cheap and easy to run a successful ad campaign. Growing Facebook presence is hard, especially when starting out and the constant changes make it difficult to keep up. Facebook Local looks like an interesting platform for small businesses and why not try some Facebook Lives too, if relevant to your business. Despite it being the first platform I used for personal use, it has been the hardest one for me to use for my business. But the ad platform does make it a ‘must have’ on my schedule. Find me on Facebook on @socialwize


Twitter was launched in 2006 and is a publically held company with 1.3 billion registered users. However, only 300 million of these are active users but sending out about 303 million tweets a day! 37% of active users post every day and 40% of them turn to Twitter for breaking news.

Twitter has recently increased the number of characters from 140 to 280 allowed in a single tweet which makes it easier to get your marketing message out to the audience. Twitter was the first platform to use hashtags in 2007 to spread the word about San Diego forest fires and hashtags have since been used to categorise messages. Despite starting off as a very text-based platform, it is now very image-based and photos, gifs and video are widely used.

Age demographics are evenly spread with Twitter being popular with all age groups. Twitter users are also 51% female to 49% male which surprised me. 80% of users are active on their mobiles and 71% are active several times a day. I find Twitter a great platform for engaging with businesses, customers and influencers. It is useful for social listening and customer service if monitored regularly. If you haven’t tried it for your business, give it a go! You can find me on Twitter on @socialwizeuk


Instagram seems to be lots of people’s new favourite at the moment with businesses seeing fast growth in followers. Engagement is often high from its 400 million active users. It launched in 2010 as a mobile social network and was bought by Facebook in 2012. It was popular with teens and millennials at the beginning and in the era of the ‘selfie’ but now has active users in all age demographics. It has 14 million active UK users and over 50% of users are under 34. 49% of users use it every day and 51% of users are male.
Stories were launched as a direct response to Snapchat and Instagram is popular for its filters for images. It is a visual platform and creating original content is key, with reposted content being less popular than on other networks. This makes this platform more labour-intensive to manage. You can advertise on Instagram through the Facebook ad platform and increasingly businesses are using this platform for their marketing. I am currently really enjoying Instagram for my business as engagement is high but it takes me a long time to post on it due to the quality of content required and the hashtag research time. I do love Stories as they are like out-takes of the main feed and more relaxed. I post as @socialwize on Instagram


Snapchat is one of the newer platforms, launching as a mobile platform in 2011 with an IPO in 2017. It has 150 million users and is popular with teens and millennials for its customised filters for images. 71% of its user base is under 34 so great for targetting a younger audience although finding the right tone of voice for your brand and this audience is key here to successful marketing. 70% of its users are female too. 54% use it every day for over 30 minutes a day. Some major brands have run successful campaigns on Snapchat but need to ensure their message is appropriate. I use Snapchat with my children but not for my business as my target audience isn’t on there but if yours is – jump in.


LinkedIn is one of the older platforms launching in 2002 and being bought recently by Microsoft. It is a business community for networking and recruiting. It has over 400m users and is popular with people over 24 and at working age. The user base is 56% male and people use it for getting jobs, networking, educating others on business matters, and promoting themselves on a business platform. 58% access it on mobile only now but the average user accesses it for only 17 minutes a month! I love sharing insights on my personal LinkedIn page as well as my Company Page. To view my professional pages, see Susie Smith


Pinterest launched in 2010 and now has 176m users (10m in the UK) and is a catalogue of images and how-to guides but also a great e-commerce platform. Users are mainly 24-35 and over 55 with a whopping 85% of them female. 47% of them use it weekly and use it for education, inspiration and shopping. The ultimate online shopping directory with buyable pins and the average order value of sales from Pinterest being $50. One I like to have some me-time on when researching ideas and would love to use as a business more soon.


YouTube launched in 2005 and has over 1 billion users sharing videos and building brand communities. Bought by Google in 2006 and now has 18m UK users watching online video every day. 56% of users under 34 and 51% male to 49% female. A huge platform and very popular with brands. Growing in size and replacing TV viewing for many turning to it for video, gaming and entertainment.

Other platforms to check out are Vero – the newest kid on the block launching this year – I like it a lot – no ads and a genuine timeline.

I am choosing not to cover G+, Reddit, Tumblr, Foursquare and Swarm as I don’t use them regularly and unless have the time, you are less unlikely to enormously benefit from trying them as a small business.

If you need more help choosing the right platform for your business or want an audit of your current platform, find me on

Susie Smith

Social Media Consultant // socialwize