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Create ads audiences in HubSpot

Last updated: September 27, 2022

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Applies to:

All products and plans

Use ads audiences to be more specific about who sees your Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn ads. In HubSpot, you can create audiences based on your website visitors, HubSpot contacts, or existing audiences.

After you creating an audience in HubSpot, you can select it when creating new ads in your Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and LinkedIn Ads accounts. Audiences created in HubSpot are automatically synced with their respective ad networks. Audiences will update as new visitors come to your site and new contacts are added or removed from your HubSpot contact lists.

If you have a Professional or Enterprise account, you can also create and manage ads audiences with the workflows tool.

Before you get started

Before creating an ad audience in HubSpot, please note the following requirements:

  • To create an audience in HubSpot, your Facebook Ads, Google Ads, or LinkedIn Ads account must be connected to HubSpot.
  • To build website visitor audiences, you must also install your ad network tracking pixels.
  • Facebook limits each ad account to 500 total audiences. If you already have 500 audiences in your Facebook Ads account, you won't be able to create Facebook audiences in HubSpot.
  • Each ad network requires that audiences are of a certain size in order to serve ads to that audience:
    • Google Ads audiences should meet the following size requirements:
      • Google Search Network: at least 1,000 active visitors or users within the last 30 days.
      • Google Display Network: at least 100 active visitors or users within the last 30 days.
      • YouTube: at least 1,000 active visitors or users within the last 30 days.
      • Gmail: at least 100 active visitors or users within the last 30 days in the Display Network.
    • Facebook Ads audiences must contain at least 20 users.
    • LinkedIn Ads audiences must contain at least 300 members.

Website visitors audience

Use a website visitors audience to target your ads to people who have visited your website in the past.

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
  • In the upper right, click Create audience.
  • In the right panel, select Website visitors.
  • Click the Source pixel dropdown menu.
    • If you've previously added your ad pixel(s), select your Facebook, Google Ads, or LinkedIn Ads pixel.
    • To add a new pixel, click Add a pixel.
  • By default, your audience will include visitors to all your pages. If you have a Marketing Hub Starter, Professional, or Enterprise account, you can specify which pages or URLs to include:
    • To include only visitors to specific landing or website pages:
      • Click the People who visited dropdown menu and click Landing page or Website page.
      • Click the Search dropdown menu and select the checkboxes next to the pages you want to include.
      • If you have a Marketing Hub Professional or Enterprise account, you can also select Blog page to target visitors to any of your blog posts.
    • To include only visitors to specific URLs:
      • Click the People who visited dropdown menu and click URL contains or URL equals.
      •  Click the Type a rule field and enter a rule. Then, press the Enter key to add the rule.
    • Click Add rule to add rules to expand your audience. For example, you can use rules to target visitors on your pricing page, or on your contact page.
  • By default, your audience will include website visitors from the last 60 days. If you have a Marketing Hub Starter, Professional, or Enterprise account, click the Visited in the last dropdown menu and select a timeframe.
  • Enter a Name for the audience.
  • Click Create audience.

Please note: it's not possible to customize the timeframe for website visitor audiences for LinkedIn, which limits the creation of visitor-based audiences to the last 90 days.



Contact list audience (Marketing Hub Starter, Professional and Enterprise only)

Create a contact list audience to target your ads to based on your contact lists in HubSpot. When creating a contact list audience, do note the following:

  • It is recommended to use lists that include the Legal basis for processing contact's data contact property to ensure that consent has been collected when sending contacts to an ad network for retargeting,
  • The number of contact list audiences you can create depends on your Marketing Hub subscription.
  • Certain ad networks place conditions on advertisers before they can use audiences created from uploaded lists:
    • Google: learn more about the requirements to match customers on Google. If you've confirmed that your Google Ads account meets Google's requirements but you still see an error when creating a contact list audience in HubSpot, please contact HubSpot Support.
    • Facebook: your ad account must be managed by a Facebook business manager. Facebook generally requires users to have some advertising history. But, does not explicitly state their requirements.

To create a contact list audience:

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
  • In the upper right, click Create audience.
  • In the right panel, select Contact list.
  • Set up your contact list audience:
    • Click the Source list dropdown menu and select your list. Your list must have at least 20 contacts to be used when configuring the targeting for an ad. For the best results, it should contain at least 1,000 contacts. 
    • Select the This contact list was not purchased, rented, appended, or provided by a third party checkbox.
    • Any non-marketing contacts won't be synced to the ad network. To set these contacts as marketing, select the Set all contacts as marketing contacts checkbox.
  • Click the Ad account dropdown menu and select the checkboxes for the Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and/or LinkedIn Ads account(s) you want to use this audience for.
  • By default, the audience name will be HubSpot - [Name of list].  You can edit the Audience name as needed.
  • Click Create audience. Your audience will appear in the Audiences tab with a Syncing status while it is synced to Facebook, Google, and/or LinkedIn. Your audience may take up to 24-48 hours to sync.

 

LinkedIn company list audience (Marketing Hub Starter, Professional, and Enterprise only)

Create a company list audience to automatically sync companies from your target accounts or a specific company profile tier to a matched audience on LinkedIn.

To create a Linkedin company list audience: 

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
  • In the upper right, click Create audience.
  • In the right panel, select Company list.
  • Under Company List, select Target accounts or a company profile tier for the audience.
  • Click the Ad account dropdown menu and select the checkboxes for the LinkedIn Ad accounts you want to use this audience for.
  • Enter a name for the audience.
  • Click Create audience.

Lookalike audience (Marketing Hub Starter, Professional and Enterprise only)

Use lookalike audiences to target your Facebook or LinkedIn ads to users similar to your existing website visitors or contact list audiences. In order to create a lookalike audience, you must have an existing audience that has already synced to Facebook or LinkedIn. 

Google Ads automatically creates similar audiences for you when they meet the required criteria, which is comparable to lookalike audiences on Facebook or LinkedIn.

To create a lookalike audience: 

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
  • In the upper right, click Create audience.
  • In the right panel, select Lookalike.
  • Click the Source audience dropdown menu and select an existing website visitors or contact list audience.
  • Click the Target location dropdown menu and select the country or regions you want to target with this audience.
  • Click Create audience.
  • You can also create lookalike audiences from the Audiences tab on your ads dashboard:
    • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
    • Click the Audiences tab.
    • Hover over an existing Facebook Ads audience and click Create lookalike.

View and manage your ads audiences

You can view and manage your ads audiences on the Audiences tab of your ads dashboard.

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Marketing > Ads.
  • Click the Audiences tab to display a list of your ads audiences.
  • To sort by name, type, source, matched size, and ad account, click the corresponding column header.
  • To remove an existing audience in HubSpot:
    • Click the audience name.
    • In the right panel, click Delete. This will remove the audience from HubSpot and prevent any further data from syncing to the ad network.
    • To completely delete an audience, it must be removed from the external ad account as well.


Audience matching

In HubSpot, the Size column in your audiences dashboard refers to the matched size, or the number of people in your audience that the ad network was able to match to known users in their database. For all audiences, the respective ad network processes these matches outside of HubSpot. Once this matching process is completed, a success status will appear in HubSpot.

Audience size is expected to be significantly lower than the number of website visitors or contacts in the list you've selected. This is because each ad network is either relying on cookies, which may not always match, or contact information. For example, if the contacts in your selected list do not have accounts in that ad network, then a match may not be found. Learn more about how HubSpot encrypts and sends properties for contact list audiences and company list audiences.

Audience matching differs between each type of audience:

  • Website visitor audiences: the ad network analyzes all visitor cookies detected on your website during the selected time frame. It then uses those cookies to find known users in their database, such as people with Google, Facebook, or LinkedIn accounts. The Size column refers to the number of matched users that the ad network was able to find.
  • Contact list audiences: the ad network analyzes the contacts in your list. The network will look for matches based on contact properties such as first and last name, phone number, and email address. The Size column refers to the number of users the ad network was able to match based on your contact properties.
  • Company list audiences: LinkedIn analyzes the companies in your list, and will look for matches based on properties such as the company's name, domain, and industry. The Size column refers to the number of matched companies LinkedIn was able to find.




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