How Facebook Retargeting Gives You a Second Chance at a First Impression

How Facebook Retargeting Gives You a Second Chance at a First Impression

Here’s Why Facebook Retargeting is So Effective

It seems like your business’s Facebook marketing campaign is off to a good start. Your target audience is seeing your ads and clicking through to your website. But soon you find out that most of those clicks don’t lead to anything of value. Your bounce rate is high, with most of that new traffic leaving your site as quickly as they got there. Sound familiar?

You’re not alone. High bounce rates are common. You may think you’ve just missed out on potential customers, with your first impression as a business not making much of a splash. But you’d be wrong. Not only is retargeting through Facebook a real practice, it’s also an incredibly effective one. After learning how it works and what it can do for your business, it might be time to engage in a retargeting campaign of your own.

The “Big” Goals of Online Marketing

Before getting into the nitty-gritty of what Facebook retargeting is, how it works, and what it can do, it’s important to understand the larger principles of online marketing. Like all forms of marketing, digital marketing has its own unique goals and strengths.

  • Drive new traffic to your website. First and foremost, you want to get people to your website. This first step makes everything else possible—from direct sales to gaining valuable insights through traffic analysis. Digital marketing does this by putting ads in front of people and using cues and language to encourage them to click through to your site.
  • Increase brand awareness. In order to become the best-known brand in your market, you have to first let people know who and where you are and what you do. This is called building brand awareness—the knowledge of your brand among your target audience. Online marketing excels at this by using filters to deliver ads to the most relevant users.
  • Serve as a virtual business card. Even if you don’t sell anything or schedule services directly from your website, it’s still important to have one and to get people there. That’s because websites serve as modern business cards. They contain all the information potential customers need about your business, including ways to contact you. These days, having a website is a must, even if it only serves to let people know you exist.
  • Convert. If you’ve dabbled in digital marketing or listened to a pitch from a marketer, you’ve probably heard the term “conversion” thrown around a lot. A conversion is when someone comes to your site and performs an action that you wanted them to take. Making a sale is a conversion, but so is signing up for an email list. The end goal of an online digital marketing campaign is to deliver as many conversions as possible.

What Happens When a User Doesn’t Convert the First Time Around?

Sometimes, users don’t convert after the first time they see an ad. In fact, that’s most users. According to Wordstream, the average conversion rate for Facebook ads is just over 9%. That means that the vast majority of users don’t convert, especially not on their first visit to a site.

Fortunately, Facebook offers a convenient way for businesses to get a second chance at getting visitors to convert. With Facebook retargeting, you can find users who have responded to an ad once but didn’t convert and target them again to deliver another round of ads.

And studies show that this approach drives a much higher conversion rate than the first pass. One study by Kenshoo noted that users who visit a website after clicking an ad from a retargeting campaign are up to 70% more likely to convert than users who aren’t retargeted. That’s a huge increase.

While marketing psychology is anything but an exact science, there are a few possible reasons as to why. First and foremost, repetition just works. People are far more likely to remember something after it’s been repeated. It works in marketing for the same reasons it works in education. 

In addition, retargeting campaigns allow advertisers to make messages even more personalized based on that user’s previous behavior. Ever seen an ad for a site you visited that said something like “Come back!” or “Give us another chance?” These are examples of retargeting ads that use your behavior as part of their pitch, giving the appearance of speaking directly to you as an individual. 

All of this means that retargeting helps keep your business fresh in people’s brains. This is known as the “top of mind awareness.” Basically, it means that when people need a product or service that your business provides, your name will be the first they think of. That way, you don’t depend on people converting right away. Instead, this kind of awareness means that when they are ready to purchase, they’ll think of you. 

How Facebook Retargeting Works

There’s a lot that goes into Facebook retargeting on the technical end, but despite what jargon-spewing digital marketers would have you believe, it’s nothing that can’t be explained and understood by just about anyone. Here are the key terms and concepts:


A Facebook pixel is simply a piece of code that you put on your website. This code tracks user behavior from Facebook ads to your site. You can use a pixel to track conversions and optimize audiences and content for ads you already have running. But they can also help you build remarketing audiences by identifying people who have visited your site or taken some kind of action on it.  


Targeting is the backbone of digital marketing. On Facebook, it works similarly to most other platforms. You build audiences based on demographic information, interests, and other factors and deliver ads to those audiences. Facebook allows you to save audiences to use and reuse in the future, making it easy to continue to refine a campaign and make it more efficient along the way. 

Location targeting

In addition to audience filters based on users’ personal information, Facebook also allows you to target people by location. This is especially useful for small local businesses that draw primarily from a local population. With location targeting, you can advertise to people inside or near a specific area. Some platforms allow you to target specific locations like businesses, but Facebook limits you to a one-mile radius.

Tracking conversions 

Tracking conversions is essential to measuring the success of your marketing campaigns. All the traffic in the world doesn’t matter if it doesn’t lead to conversions. Facebook’s advertising dashboard gives you a wealth of information about your ads’ performance, including conversion rates. You can use this metric to get a basic idea of how effective your campaign is and use it to test variables like your message or audience. anything.

Budget flexibility

One of the biggest advantages of Facebook marketing for small local business advertising is that it gives advertisers complete control over the budget with no real minimum buy-in. You can start a campaign for as little as a few dollars or spend thousands a week getting your message out. That also means scalability is easy. You can start with small investments while you learn your audiences and the marketing landscape, then ramp up your ad spend once you’ve achieved the conversion rate you want. 

Ad and video creation and deployment

Facebook has a number of options when it comes to what kind of content you can deliver. One of the fastest-growing forms of advertising is through video. And for that, Facebook actually makes it really simple. Using their dashboard, which they call their Ad Center, you can create a post much like you would a normal Facebook post on a personal page. You have the option to choose either an image or a video for your ad. In either case, you simply upload the visual and then select an audience (or create one) to deploy it. After Facebook approves your ad it will start going out to your target audience immediately. 

Promotions and deals to drive customer acquisition

Facebook also makes it easy to lure customers to your site with promotions and deals. You can use videos or images to advertise sweet deals and set your campaign to expire just as the promotion does. This kind of time-sensitive marketing, sometimes referred to as FOMO marketing, can create a real sense of urgency in addition to offering an opportunity to get a great deal on a product or service. You can use ads like this to drive traffic to your site. Even if users don’t end up making a purchase, you’ll be able to use their visit and behavior to help with your retargeting efforts.

Examples of Facebook Retargeting

No two Facebook retargeting campaigns are the same—or at least they shouldn’t be. Each industry has its own language and purpose for customers. And each business within that industry has its own unique selling points and goals. That’s why the best professional marketers like the ones at GeoTarget develop hand-tailored strategies and content for each and every one of their clients.

Here are a few ways businesses in different industries are using Facebook retargeting:

Dentists & Orthodontists

Facebook retargeting is an excellent tool for businesses in the dental industry. That’s because, more than ever, media outlets are recommending that people shop around for dental work. With wild variations in how much businesses charge for services like crowns or root canals, people depend on a business’s website to help them make a decision.

Since shopping around has become the norm, it is likely that a user won’t end their journey at just one site. That leaves an opportunity for a dental or orthodontics practice to swoop in and retarget those who showed interest by clicking on an ad—marketing directly to people who are both already familiar with the brand and very much “in-market.”

Real Estate Agents

Reputation and name recognition are the cornerstones of a successful real estate career. Building a name for yourself in your local real estate market is no easy task, but Facebook retargeting can make it much easier. It works for two main reasons.

First, it goes back to repetition. By definition, retargeting means you’ll be sending ads to people who have at least one experience with your brand. As we discussed earlier, repetition is one of the oldest—and most effective—tricks in the book when it comes to information recall and brand awareness.

Facebook retargeting can also help you show off your knowledge of an area, especially when you throw location targeting into the mix. For example, you can use the pixel to identify people who are in the market for a home in your area. Then, you could retarget only those who have children and deliver ads that provide information about school districts in a specific zip code or location. As a result, your in-market audience will see ads that are both specifically geared towards them and provide useful information about an important consideration in the homebuying process. 

Gyms & Spas

Marketing for gyms and spas is a notoriously tough nut to crack. Crowded local marketplaces and a natural hesitancy to sign up for long commitments make it difficult to convert interest to sign-ups. But this is where retargeting through Facebook can really shine.

According to Kissmetrics, 96% of people who visit a gym’s website are not ready to sign a contract. That means that not only is retargeting through Facebook a good idea, it’s probably essential. 

One tried-and-true method of attracting new clients through retargeting is to use enticing promotional deals to get people in the door. Some businesses like to offer free trial periods, some offer the first month free, and others throw in other value adds like free personal training for people who sign up.

But offering these deals to everyone can put a serious dent in your bottom line. That’s why it’s a good idea to reserve these promotions for audiences who have already expressed interest in your business. Rather than offer a blanket promotion, you can offer special “for you only” promotions to people who have visited your site. This can help people feel like the promotion is a rare opportunity that they can’t pass up.

Construction Companies

Whether it’s building decks, installing roofs, or putting up new construction homes, construction is another industry in which people spend a lot of time shopping around. With so many companies offering similar services, standing out from the crowd can be tough.

But with Facebook retargeting, you can use the headache of shopping around for construction contractors to your advantage. That’s because while sifting through site after site in a crowded local marketplace might be the smart thing to do, it’s still exhausting.

A retargeting campaign allows you to offer contrast to the hectic search for the right contractor. You can offer relief to internet users by promoting yourself as a simple, easy, no-strings-attached option. 

To do that, you can retarget people who have been to your site and deliver a very simple ad that offers a free quote or estimate. Then, you can direct users on your site to fill out a form with all the info you need to give them a realistic quote. By directing them to ask for a quote rather than waiting for them to do so, you’ve got a better chance at being the first quote they receive, drastically increasing your chances of securing your next contract.

GeoTarget: Experts in Facebook Retargeting

Lots of marketing companies love to throw out a bunch of industry terminology to justify high rates and make you believe that digital marketing is some kind of rocket science you couldn’t possibly do for yourself. That’s not what we’re about at GeoTarget.

We’re here to tell you that it is completely possible for you to do your own digital marketing and even Facebook retargeting. In fact, after reading this article, you know all of the basics you need to get up and running.

That said, just because you can doesn’t mean you should. It’s entirely possible to DIY your home’s electrical wiring, but if you’re not a professional you could create huge problems for yourself. The same could be said for getting stitches, or working on your car. The truth is, small businesses like yours exist because professionals are just that—professional.

You’re a professional in your field offering professional services. So are we. At GeoTarget, our business is helping your business become best-known in your local market. Whether that’s through Facebook retargeting, location-based advertising for Facebook and other platforms, or any number of other approaches, we’ll assign you your own dedicated team of marketing professionals to help you get there.