Social Media Advertising: To Retarget or Target?

Social Media Advertising: To Retarget or Target?

When you plan your social media advertising campaign, you have to consider many different factors to build an effective strategy.  While we’ve written before about how advertising online through retargeting works, comparing retargeting and targeting can help you make a more informed decision.

When it comes to paid social media ads, the overwhelming majority use Facebook ads (84%), followed by Google ads (41%) and LinkedIn ads (18%). (Social Media Examiner, 2015)

What is Retargeting?

At its core, retargeting is advertising to people who have previously expressed interest or indicated – on the company website, Facebook like, Facebook pixel – in your product/service. Retargeting is a cookie-based technology that uses simple Javascript code to anonymously ‘follow’ your audience all over the Web.

What is Targeting?

Targeting is advertising to people believed to be interested in or likely interested in your product/service. This can be done based on demographics, location, time of day, etc.

Targeting relies on who you are and retargeting relies on what you do.

Retargeting vs Targeting

Why isn’t my retargeting campaign working?

If you are currently running a retargeting campaign and feel disappointed with the results, you may want to consider if the audience that visits your website is the audience you really want to reach. For example, if the people primarily visiting your website are there to seek employment opportunities, they aren’t going to be interesting in your freight transportation and logistics services. Instead of retargeting to job seekers visiting your website, the logistics company in that scenario would be in a better position if they simply targeted their desired market who have yet to come into close quarters with these advertising ventures.

Prospecting is the most difficult part of the sales process for salespeople. (HubSpot, 2017)

So, how would targeting work better than retargeting?

Targeting allows the logistic company to show social media ads to an audience that better aligns with the decision-making Transportation Manager based on their demographic information. This Manager probably already knows they need to move freight, so advertising your access to 50,000 carriers, online tracking of routes, and one point of contact they can reach at any time. This works as a funnel-based strategy, which entails three important principles such as awareness, consideration, and transaction.

Awareness – trying to attract people who don’t know you yet.

These exclude current customers. Social media will be the guiding primary tool in driving awareness. This can be done in many different ways, but some tips on best practices include using dynamic, video, and carousel ads along with running A/B tests to seek the most appropriate target audience.

Consideration – engaging the people you know as well as existing customers.

After drawing in the people “who don’t know you yet”, you can build campaigns that will intrigue your various target audiences. For example, these could include loyal clients, recent buyers, slipping away users, etc. The campaigns used must be based on audiences you have picked. Use of CRM data during this phase is advantageous.

Transaction- after engaging those who know you, they must be converted and become a buyer of your product.

It should be noted that this is usually a smaller group of people that are extremely close to becoming your leads. It is beneficial to use website custom audiences and product audiences. Also, keep in mind it is pertinent to your growth to leave alone recent customers or existing customers as you are pulling in new ones.

61% of organizations engaged in social selling report a positive impact on revenue growth. (Feedback Systems, 2015)

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