Feature Focus: Create Lookalike Audiences with our Ready-hashed Data Export Feature

2 min read

As marketers, we are always looking for ways to get our message in front of more people. But it’s important to reach the right people – people who are likely to be interested in our brand and ultimately convert –  through clever targeting. Lookalike audiences are a brilliant way of reaching new people that share similarities to your existing database; simply upload your contact list into either Twitter, Facebook or Google, and these platforms will match the demographics of your contacts to their users, and allow you to serve ads to them.

Only it’s not quite that simple. In order to protect your customer data, you’ll need to make it anonymous by hashing it. Hashing is an irreversible, cryptographic process that turns your contacts’ email addresses into a non-identifiable string of numbers and letters. This is the data that is then uploaded into the social platforms to create lookalike audiences.

So you want to create a lookalike audience, but how on earth do you hash?

It might sound daunting, but hashing is easy! Akero’s latest feature, the Export Audience button, allows you to export your data, already hashed! This tool uses an SHA-256 hashing algorithm, as required by both Google and Facebook.

You can hash any audience segment you like, dependent on the outcomes you want from your ad campaign.

See it in action

In this example, Net Natives are hashing leads in their ‘Edurank’ campaign in three simple steps. They select leads from the top menu, select the campaign ‘Edurank’ from the side bar, and hit the Export Audience button. A CSV file full of hashed data is then sent to the user, ready to be uploaded into the social platform of their choice – Google for example.

Google would then process the hashed data and provide Net Natives with their lookalike audience. From here, Net Natives would be able to target Google Display ads to these people who share similar demographics to their Edurank leads, and are hopefully predisposed to be interested in Edurank themselves.