Audience Retargeting 101: Everything you need to know on targeting strategies

What is it?

Audience targeting! One of the most important measures to increase your business’ exposure in this digital era. The act of segmenting consumers into different groups while taking into consideration their interests, demographic or even psychographic data, is essential in establishing the alignment of marketing campaigns with consumers’ perceptions and lifestyles. Simply put, it is evident that businesses have better results when marketers reach the appropriate audiences…. The ones who will interact with their products or services.

Demographic and psychographic parameters must carefully be gathered, tracked and managed prior of targeting an audience. Such data includes age, gender, remuneration, interests, area of living, values and motivation; all parameters that are bound to impact consumers’ behaviour. When seeking information about your audience, you learn who they are, what their habits are, what they research or if they have an active involvement with your organisation.

Strategies for implementing audience targeting:

Numerous researchers and platforms have dealt with audience targeting; they all agree in the vital need of applying certain strategies to effectively boost the performance of your company’s campaigns. In a snapshot, some of the most important ones to note are:

  • Google-in Market Audience: This is a powerful AdWords targeting tool that enables advertisers to target consumers who are actively searching a business’ product and/or service. Specifically, marketers have strong indications that targeting potential clients who browse websites and click on ads for specific products through in-market audience, leads to a buying behaviour of high-intent.
  • Google Ads: One of its multiple tools is adding and viewing audiences which will then be used to configure numerous A/B tests. When marketers want to test the effectiveness and shrill of a campaign’s content in relation to the preferred audience, they conduct A/B testing; such actions aim in dividing an audience into two groups for campaign testing purposes. This gives the opportunity to marketers to improve the marketing content prior of officially publishing a campaign. Needless to say, A/B testing is also run while campaigns are live in order to optimise them and provide streamlined results that make sense to the marketing departments.
  • Facebook Custom Audiences and Retargeting: Businesses can benefit from Facebook features in many ways; one is targeting through custom audiences. In this case, users will only be exposed to content and ads related to their interests, preferences and intentions. Thus, this adds value and loyalty to companies, as well as there is no evidence of ads waste since they reach the “right” people.
  • Search Engine Optimisation (SEO): Achieving organic SEO is considered to be one of the best audience targeting strategies, since using correct and appropriate keywords, audiences that are actively involved with a company’s products/services are actually targeted. It is worth noting that a great source of keyword research is LinkedIn and Keyword Planner in Google Ads.

Audience Targeting Options:

Google Ads has created different audiences that can be used in campaign targeting:

  1. Affinity Audiences: Marketers can reach people based on a comprehensive view of their lifestyle and interests, specifically people that take great consideration of a business product/service.
  2. Custom Affinity Audience: Marketers are able to further define their affinity audiences in order to have a better reach (e.g. Sports Fans Affinity Audience are redefined as Marathon Runners Custom Affinity Audience).
  3. Life Events: Reaching and Engaging with audiences on special occasions, such as graduation ceremonies, moving homes, marriage ceremonies etc. So, if for example someone moves to a new house, then it has a high potential that will need moving services, new furniture and more; thus, the said audience is exposed only to relevant content.
  4. In-market Audiences: Marketers have in the centre of their interest people that will convert to potential clients. When in-market audiences are exposed to remarketing content, the activities will probably lead to the completion of a purchase.
  5. Custom Intent Audiences: The use of segments in ad groups by launching in-market keywords, URLs and apps ideally focused in the potential client.
  6. Remarketing: Focused on reaching people who are previously engaged with the business’ website, mobile apps, videos etc.
  7. Detailed demographics: Reach wide range of audience segments that have identical characteristics.
  8. Customer Match: The use of online and offline parameters to expose targeted ads in order to reach and engage with the consumers. Ads are demonstrated to the people that already shared information with the business.
  9. Similar Audiences: Google Ads automatically discovers new customers who are like existing ones. Hence, the ads are only visible to the people on the existing Remarketing and Customer Match lists.


There are numerous options and strategies for implementing audience targeting. What are the benefits? Firstly, by acknowledging what the targeted market is and its true interests are, businesses can better attract towards the reach and awareness of its brand. They can also better connect with their market by using “advanced audiences”, since they can direct people’s consideration onto their products and services. They specifically focus on people who are actively searching and comparing on the Google Display Network, partner sites and YouTube. Companies assist potential customers in choosing to use their products and services. In particular, when people show an intent towards a brand, they are being categorised through hyper-targeted audiences and action ad formats. With this, remarketing and retargeting are implemented.

With the above in mind, it is essential to note that when utilising audience targeting it is vital to always keep in mind the buyer persona. The potential buyer must be in the centre of attention of targeted ads and your content strategy. When marketing materials use both the Content Strategy and Audience Targeting the outcome would be an eventual increase of organic traffic, as well as a high Return of Investment (ROI). Consequently, audience targeting has positive advantages to customers but also to brands since it improves views, engagement and – ultimately – sales rates.