Figurines representing visitors to a b2b website that are being retargeted

How To Incorporate Retargeting Into Your B2B Marketing Strategy

The vast majority of people that stumble onto your website will probably stumble away never to see you or your brand again… That is, unless you use retargeting. This post will delve into what retargeting is, how it works and some ways that you can implement it to improve your overall marketing strategy.

Do you ever wish that you could find a way to sift through those thousands of anonymous visitors, identify the ones that are most likely to buy from your company and then follow them around the web showing them branded messages everywhere they go? With retargeting you can do that.

What is retargeting?

There are two kinds of retargeting: pixel based retargeting and list based retargeting. I’m going to walk through both kinds and show you tools that utilize both methods.

Pixel based retargeting – This is the most common form of retargeting. It is essentially a piece of Javascript often called a “pixel” that is placed on a page or multiple pages on your website. When a visitor navigates to a page with one of these pixels on it, their web browser puts a “cookie” on your browser. Once one of these cookies is added to a visitor’s browser, retargeting begins. When that visitor goes to other websites, they are shown ads for your website. This kind of retargeting begins pretty quickly after someone visits your website and can take into account what pages they looked at and their behavior on your website.

Most of the time in pixel based retargeting you can control which ads people see based on what pages they viewed, their behavior on the website or demographic information.

List based retargeting – This kind of retargeting is usually used on social media websites. To do list based retargeting, you upload a list of email addresses to the social network of choice and then show retargeting adds to people with those email addresses.

List based retargeting isn’t as immediate, or automated as pixel based retargeting. One common problem is that if people gave you one email and then used another email for their social account login, they won’t get retargeted.

Retargeting is different that other forms of digital advertising, like PPC advertising, because it only targets people who have had some exposure to your online brand. Because it’s targeting a warmer group of people, the results are often much better than other forms of advertising:

According to Digital Information World, typical conversion rate for display ads is .07% while the avg. conversion rate for retargeting ads is 0.7%. Also, website visitors who are retargeted are 70% more likely to convert on your website.

What Place Should Retargeting Hold In Your Overall Marketing Strategy?

Retargeting is the cherry on top. Retargeting is a relatively advanced marketing tactic that should be used as one part of an overall inbound marketing strategy. It can be used in every stage of the buyer’s journey to keep your company top-of-mind with your prospects, leads and customers. In the end, the success or failure of your marketing efforts will depend as much on your ability to design an effective strategy than on the individual tactics you use.

Retargeting should be used as an amplification for your content. If you aren’t offering anything of value to your prospects, leads and customers, then it won’t matter how many retargeting ads they see, they won’t engage with your brand.

What Retargeting Platform To Use

There are a lot of different platforms out there that you can use to implement your remarketing. Each platform allows you to display ads on different sites. I’d like to show you three of the most widely used retargeting solutions that are available and walk you through how to set a campaign up in each.


Retargeting software Adroll's logo

AdRoll is one of the most used pixel based platforms for retargeting, and is a great all in one solution. AdRoll allows you to display retargeting ads on almost any website including social websites like Facebook, Youtube, Google and more. Want to learn how to set up retargeting with AdRoll? Check out this video:

Conclusion: AdRoll’s biggest plus is that it allows your retargeting ads to appear on almost any site on the web. This makes it great for staying top of mind with your target audience no matter where they go.

Google Adwords Remarketing

Google Remarketing logo

Google Adwords has a retargeting tool called “Remarketing.” Using Google’s tool will allow you to place retargeting ads on the Google Display Network which includes sites like Youtube, Gmail, Google Finance and Blogger. Want to learn how to set up a remarketing campaign? Check out the video below:

Conclusion: While Google’s Remarketing isn’t quite as comprehensive as AdRoll, it still has the ability to display ads in a number of places. It also has the added plus of being right in your Google Adwords dashboard so that you can run your PPC and retargeting campaigns from the same place.

Facebook Retargeting

Facebook advertising logo with like symbol

Facebook offers four different ways to show retargeting ads to users:

 1) Website visitors (pixel based retargeting) – Show Facebook ads to people who visited your website.

2) Email subscribers (list based retargeting) – Show Facebook ads to people on your email lists.

3) Facebook fans – Show ads to people who liked your company page.

4) Relevant audiences – targeting people based on demographics and interests. You can target people who share similar characteristics (interests, demographics and behaviors) to any of the three groups of people above (Facebook fans, website visitors and email subscribers).

Facebook advertising is often overlooked by b2b marketers, but can drive incredible results without much effort. Want to learn more about retargeting with Facebook? Check out this post from Social Media Examiner.

Conclusion: Facebook’s retargeting, unlike the first two options only takes place on Facebook and therefore displays your ads in a smaller digital area. Facebook’s retargeting can be a great place to go if you find that people respond particularly well to your ads on Facebook or to hone your retargeting strategy.


These aren’t the only tools you can use for retargeting, but they are some of the most widely used and considered to be effective. In the end, you should try a few different strategies out and see what works best for you. While retargeting is a powerful tool for your marketing, it should be supported with a quality content and inbound marketing strategy.

3 replies
  1. Luke O'Kelley
    Luke O'Kelley says:

    I would recommend AdRoll in most cases, because of the ability to place your adds in more places.

  2. Bee
    Bee says:

    This blog explained very well the difference between pixel based retargeting and list based retargeting. It also was helpful for me to finally figure out what the Google Adwords Remarketing retargeting tool is because it will be more convenient with everything in the same place.

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