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Traffic arbitrage

Parsing Facebook: How to obtain an audience in 2023

Parsing an audience from Facebook is challenging. However, there is nothing impossible about it. It's worth mentioning upfront: the administration of the social network is against this practice. And if you use the obtained audience for creating advertising campaigns, you will most likely face a ban. The thing is, targeting ads to specific users using their IDs is only possible if they have previously interacted with your account, group, or application.
Then why parse users from FB?

  • To generate traffic through mass subscriptions, likes, friend requests, or group invitations.
  • Searching for groups based on keywords. This can help identify users who might be interested in your offer.
  • Competitor analysis: You'll be able to see the audience your competitors are targeting and tailor your advertising campaign accordingly.

Methods of parsing Facebook users

The social network constantly closes opportunities for parsers, so data collection methods periodically cease to work. However, even today there are several parsing methods available. What can you choose?

Cloud services. When using such solutions, all the work is done on the service's side; you just need to set the settings and wait for the task to be completed. Examples of such services include Pepper.Ninja. For Facebook, it offers two tools: searching for groups by keyword with parsing their members, and collecting the audience that has liked a specific page. However, due to the social network's restrictions, the final list may only represent up to 80% of the actual group audience.

Downloadable software. When using standalone programs, it will take some time (depending on your PC's power and the scale of tasks). Let's take Datacol as an example. The program gathers user data who are part of the same group as your account. Therefore, before parsing, it's recommended to create a separate profile and join all the groups of interest. One drawback is the absence of IP ban protection. Hence, it's recommended to use software with proxies, VPNs, or anti-detection browsers.

Scripts and utilities. Essentially, this option involves writing a small program yourself to perform the parsing task. This can be done, for instance, in Python, using libraries like Beautiful Soup, PyInstaller, and Selenium Decoder. You create a small script that prompts for the Facebook profile's login and password, as well as the link to the community. After that, the script automatically navigates to the list of members, scrolls to the end of the page, and extracts the necessary data from the page's code. To avoid writing it yourself, you can post a task for creating a similar script on a freelance exchange.

Parsing example

Let's go through the example of collecting group members using Datacol. Even in demo mode, the program provides the first 25 parsing results. In the gathered database, the following information will be indicated: group name, user name, and profile link. Moreover, you can independently add or remove the collected data.

  1. Download and install Datacol.
  2. Start a VPN or proxy, log in to your Facebook profile, and join the groups of your interest.
  3. Launch Datacol and select "social-parsers" in the campaign tree.
4.In the dropdown menu, select the campaign "facebook.com-members-of-group-by-list.par".
5.In the quick settings tree, double-click on "plugin". A window with campaign settings will open.
6.Provide the login and password for your Facebook account, then click "Save and Exit".
7.In the "Input data" field, insert the link to the group that your account is subscribed to.
Click "Start" and wait for the process to complete. The obtained data can be exported in formats such as .csv, .txt, .xlsx.


Parsing user data from Facebook is a completely achievable task. Depending on the information you need, you can use both inexpensive and more expensive solutions. However, it's important to remember that the social network is against parsing, so it's advisable to have a backup of accounts on hand (if you're working manually). Additionally, keep in mind that the obtained data might not always be accurate.