Connect Data from Facebook Ads to Tableau
This simple and quick guide gives you easy instructions on how you can extract your data from Facebook Ads and then analyze it in Tableau
Facebook is the world's most popular social network, equipped with a powerful advertising network where billions of dollars are spent each year. Marketers love using Facebook Ads ads to reach their target audience at scale.
Tableau is a business intelligence platform and visualization tool that helps anyone see and better understand their data. People love using Tableau because it allows you to take raw data and turn it into charts, graphs, dashboards and reports that share insights and tell a story.
Before loading your data into Tableau, you will have to prep it first. If you don't already have a data structure in which to store the data you retrieve, you'll have to create a schema for your data tables. Then, for each value in the response, you'll need to identify a predefined datatype (INTEGER, DATETIME, etc.) and build a table that can receive them.
Facebook Ads's documentation should tell you what fields are provided by each endpoint, along with their corresponding datatypes. Complicating things is the fact that the records retrieved from the source may not always be "flat" – some of the objects may actually be lists. In these cases you'll likely have to create additional tables to capture the unpredictable cardinality in each record.
You have three options for extracting data from Facebook:
- You can export a report that you have created and saved. All you have to do is navigate to Ads reporting from the Facebook Ads Manager navigation and click on the report and then click Export.
- You can use a tool like Improvado. By leveraging Improvado, you can easily and quickly integrate, connect, and see all your Facebook Ads Insights data flow seamlessly into your desired visualization tool or database. Improvado does not require any technical skills to operate. You can sync your data over with just a few clicks.
Keeping data up to date
The key is building your script so that it can sense incremental updates made to the data.
Thankfully, Facebook’s API results include fields like "date" so that you can identify those records which are new since the last update you made (or since the most recent record you have copied). Once you have taken new data into consideration, you can easily set your script either as a continuous loop or cron job to pull down new data as soon as it appears.