Social Media

What is social media retargeting and how to do it like a pro?

You must have felt at least once in your life that you are the angels’ favorite. After all, the law of attraction got you to the same ads that were on your mind. Well, I am sorry to break it to you, but it was not the law of attraction. It was the magic of social media marketing coming your way.


Yes, that is a way of advertising in which you will be redirected to a product or service you have searched for or spent some valuable time looking at. Some advertisements are like bullets and have a direct impact on your mind. If it gets deep into your mind, you will be convinced to take the action.


With the advent of e-papers and e-magazines, the trend of online advertising has bloomed even more. You read the news online, look for products online, and that is where online advertising comes into play. If you use Facebook, you will see Facebook ads; if you use Instagram, you will see Instagram ads. If you are switching websites, the affiliate marketers will get the relevant ads on your screen.


This game of redirecting you to the products on your mind is known as social media retargeting. As the name suggests, it is a way in which social media will get you back to your target.


Let’s learn more about social media retargeting:


Social media marketing service providers use e-commerce marketing tactics to retarget you to the products you were looking for.


Now, let us see how it works:


Firstly, consumers are targeted through their online subscriptions, searches over the net, and other internet actions. And then, based on their searches, they are shown the data related to it. These targeted ads are usually shown on social media platforms, as they are the most used platforms these days. People use professional social media marketing services to seek help in running successful ads on various social media sites.


Types of retargeting:


Retargeting via Social Media


Someone visits your website but leaves without making any purchase or taking any service. Then you will create a campaign on social media to get them back. As they get back to social media, your campaign will grab their attention to convert them. The advertisement will be related to the product they viewed. This will aid in converting a potential customer who would otherwise be lost through social media.



Pixel-based retargeting is a commonly used method of retargeting. When a user visits your website, a piece of Java script known as a pixel is placed in their browser. It makes their browser cookie-d. And when the user leaves the site, the retargeting platforms get a notification from the cookies. These platforms then serve specific ads based on the users’ searches. It is a promising way of retargeting because it can come into effect immediately.



List-based retargeting comes into action after you have the contact information of the user. You can also use your existing contacts to retarget them. It can be done by uploading the list of email addresses to a retargeting campaign (on Facebook and Twitter). The platforms then identify users on that network with the same addresses and serve retargeting ads specifically to them.


This method is not as common as pixels-based retargeting, but it is a more customised way of retargeting. It is customer-based and is made as per the specific lists of the users made, categorically.


If the user has used or provided an email ID that differs from the one used on social media, the ads will not be displayed to them.


Let us now have a look at various social media platforms that are used for retargeting:


Facebook and Instagram retargeting

The audience here can be customised. You can choose the option that is most suitable for you. For example, choose any of the following options:


Contact list:

You can use the data from CRM to reach out to those potential customers.



It is a way of collecting data offline organically. You do not use any cookies to       trap this data. It can be done through product giveaways. It helps in clearly         analysing your shoppers and if they are interested or not, and what they are          interested in.


Website Visitors

Facebook pixels are used that are similar to the JavaScript pixels mentioned above. These pixels help in making a custom audience according to the people who have visited the website.


App users

Here, the Facebook pixels are used to target the app users. If someone has left the things in their cart in the shopping app and then switches to a social media site, similar products will be shown to them.


Dynamic Ads

It is useful in promoting products to people who have shown an interest in your app or website. All you have to do is upload a product catalogue on Instagram and Facebook and start a campaign. It works by finding the right people and taking them back to the product they checked but did not buy.


Twitter retargeting

You can choose between the three types of audience available:



The contact information of the clients is used to retarget them. Clients are targeted through emails of present clients or their Twitter names.



In this, you target the people who visited your site through Twitter’s Official Partner Program or Twitter website tag.


-Mobile apps

Here you can reach the users who did some activity in your app, like signing up or installing.


LinkedIn retargeting

Website retargeting: It helps you categorise website visitors based on the pages they have visited. It will then customise the ads as per the visitors you want to reactivate.


Snapchat retargeting

Audiences for Snapchat engagement help in targeting those users who have interacted with any of the advertisements on the app.


YouTube retargeting

It reaches those users who have interacted with your videos in the past, your ads, or your YouTube channel.


Pinterest retargeting

Engagement targeting Pinterest provides various options like pinning, saving, commenting, sharing, or following to engage with your post or account. You can reach out to these visitors based on these actions. Based on their interests and pins, you can show them relatable ads. You can target the visitors in these two ways:


Visitor targeting. You can insert a Pinterest tag on your webpage and approach people based on their activities, such as signing up for services, browsing a specific topic, and adding things to the cart. Visitor retargeting can be done by following these options:


Event: In this event, tags are used on your site and the data associated with the events.

It helps in tracking the pages the visitor has seen on the site.


Best practices for re-targeting


Segment your audience

Do not use the strategy of the retailers who will send the “same message” to all the customers who visited the site in the last 30 days. You can categorise your audience in many ways. They can be diversified based on some factors like recent bouncers, cart abandoners, recent buyers, recent visitors, etc.


Connect all the data dots

With so many social media platforms using retargeting strategies, it becomes highly important to use a strategy that is ultra-personalized. It can be done by accumulating data from all the sites they have visited to figure out their interests and their limits. According to this data, the creative team can customise the messages, emails, and posters to be run in the ads.


General Insights

-Create a non-rushed sales funnel

-Show customers the items they loved

-Re-engaging with the lost customers

-Abandoned Carts Reminders

-Sequencing Ads


Facebook and Instagram

-Use as much information as possible to classify your audience and target the appropriate user.

-Categorise the information into various columns as per Facebook.


Now, add the specific product IDs to the App events and Facebook Pixel.



Make sure that the scrutinised audience is not too small for the campaign target. Take a target of at least 500 users who can match your list.

-If you have a small audience or you want to drive higher campaign volume, use the option “expand reach by targeting similar audience”.



-Name your target audience uniquely and clearly

-Choose a URL that matches your campaign goals

-Examine the “verified” tag status of your audience after 24 hours

-Diversify your campaign to guarantee relevance, scale, and reach



Snapchat is all about visuals. There are no hashtags, no captions, and no keywords. It is all about the visuals. So to increase the engagement here, distribute visual content that is impressive, meaningful, and increases engagement.



-Scrutinise your audience based on specific categories. You can classify your audience based on their keywords, topics, interests, location, etc.

Now optimise your campaign accordingly.



-Categorise your audience based on the keywords they use to search.

-Ensure that the audience you are targeting is verified in the tag dashboard.

-Select the keywords that align with the Pinterest policy.


To summarize,

Retargeting is the new normal that social media marketing service providers have adopted. You can use the free tools we have provided in the article to make your client’s game strong. I hope that you enjoyed learning about these concepts and are all set to start your targeting game.


Udit Khanna is a Digital Marketing Course professional at Expert Training Institute, an expert in Digital Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Pay Per Click, Social Media, etc. who helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers. Previously, Udit worked as a marketing professional for various startups and tech companies. He graduated with B.Sc from IGNOU with a dual degree in Business Administration (Marketing & Finance).

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *