Beginner’s Guide: Setting Up Google Ads and Facebook Retargeting

Beginner's Guide: Setting Up Google Ads and Facebook Retargeting

The term “retargeting” has been the buzzword of the digital marketing world in recent years. You might have heard all the praises: extremely high ROI, incredible conversion rate, and there are even marketers that swore by retargeting as the most effective advertising method nowadays. However, what is retargeting? In this guide, we will discuss the basics of retargeting, and how to easily set up your retargeting campaign in no time at all.


What is Retargeting?

First, we should clarify the common misconception regarding retargeting and remarketing. Although they are related to each other, retargeting is not necessarily remarketing, and vice versa.

The term “remarketing” refers to the marketing efforts targeted to the same prospects again and again. When you see the same restaurant ads repeatedly on those billboards beside the road, that is remarketing.

Retargeting, on the other hand, is a new form of remarketing for the digital world. With retargeting, we are shown repeated online ads on the same traffic for a dedicated time. While retargeting is fairly new, it has grown to be the biggest aspect of remarketing in recent years. Generally, there are three main applications of retargeting:

  1. Retargeting the audience who have visited your site
  2. Retargeting those who have visited your competitors’ sites
  3. Retargeting the audience that has taken certain actions depending on your business’s needs (i.e. retargeting those who have tried a free-trial demo on your site)


Why Retargeting?

Since retargeting is technically a form of remarketing, we should first understand the benefits of remarketing. Let’s take the classic iOS vs Android debate, for example. No, we are not going to discuss which one is better, however, there is a high likelihood that the one you prefer is the one you are more exposed to.

If most of your friends are using Android phones (and they recommended it to you, consciously or subconsciously), you are more likely to be an Android user. The idea is, we are more likely to enjoy what we are familiar with.

So how do we build on this with retargeting? Let’s use another example. Let’s say you just browsed on Amazon for a new TV set. Then, for whatever reasons, you decided to stop looking for a TV set that day. A proper retargeting campaign might target you, and when you later on opened your Facebook later that day, a TV ad shows up, effectively reminding you to buy that TV.

If you are familiar with the marketing funnel concept, you might understand that with every step of the buyer’s journey, the possibility of a conversion will be smaller. Retargeting, in essence, is an effort to optimize the chance of conversion in each funnel stage.

Retargeting is also a very effective tactic to build brand awareness, while a study by ComScore suggested that retargeting can increase site visitation by a whopping 726%.


How Retargeting Works

There are two popular ways to run a retargeting campaign: through Google Adwords or Facebook Ads. There are other platforms that offer retargeting services, but considering the size of Google Adwords and Facebook Ads, they should be your first choices.

Retargeting works mainly with the help of a code snippet in the form of a cookie in your customer’s browser. The cookie will then collect their information and based on that gathered data, you can then target those visitors with your promotion.

How about targeting your competitors’ audience?

The best method is using keyword-targeting. Here, you can target a certain keyword related to your industry while excluding your own visitor. This is a pretty reliable method, especially if you are in a competitive industry.

The second, and arguably the easiest method, is to use social media: for example, we can target those who have followed or liked our competitors.


Setting Up Google Ads Retargeting


Google Ads offers a built-in retargeting feature, so you can set up a retargeting campaign easily following these steps:

  1. Click on ‘shared library’ on the left of your Ads dashboard
  2. Click ‘view’ under Audiences, and you can choose ‘Set Up Remarketing’. Leave the box unchecked for now
  3. Google will offer to send you instructions, get it if you want. Check the ‘Use the Google Analytics tag’ box
  4. Set up a new list after clicking on ‘Remarketing List’
  5. Click on ‘Visitors to a page with a specific tag’, then create a new tag
  6. Set the campaign duration
  7. Hit “Save,” and you will get your retargeting cookie on the next page

After you’re done, simply copy and paste the retargeting cookie code into the HTML body tag of your site.

There you have it, you’ve set up a Google Ads retargeting campaign!


Setting Up Facebook Ads Retargeting

Setting Up Facebook Ads Retargeting

Facebook Ads are even easier with less necessary steps and Facebook will walk you through every step. Here are 3 things you will need to know before starting a Facebook Ad Campaign, but you can set up your campaign easily through the following steps:

First, click on ‘Tools’ in your ad manager, and select ‘Pixels’

Enter your domain name, and Facebook will walk you through all the necessary steps. You will then get your retargeting cookie code snippet.

The biggest benefit of the retargeting campaign is higher conversions in each stage of your funnel. It is specifically targeted for those who have shown interest in your brand, product, or your niche, so you know they are shopping.

While the concept of retargeting and code snippets might be confusing at first, it is actually quite easy to learn as Google and Facebook have taken the necessary steps to make this comprehensive system easy to operate. However, it takes years of experience to understand where to invest marketing dollars to get the most return, that’s where B2B marketing consultant can help your business on creating content, generating demand, and enabling sales using budget with maximum efficiency.


I'm a growth marketing consultant who helps B2B, SaaS, IT, technology and software companies generate more leads, sales and grow revenue online. I offer expert advice on marketing your company the right way through performance-based SEO, digital marketing, social media, search engine marketing and many other online practices. Connect with me on LinkedIn and schedule a free marketing strategy session!