What is Retargeting?

What is Retargeting?
Folks, it’s an exciting time to be alive.

We can have delicious meals delivered to us just about anywhere. We can ship goods all over the planet at a speed that would make our ancestors’ eyeballs spin. Oh, yeah, and the robots are watching our web usage so they can serve us up some very specific advertising.

Remarkably, we don’t refer to this as robot spying. Instead, we call it retargeting, and it’s an accepted marketing practice—one you may want to consider for your shop’s marketing efforts. We’ll explain why in a minute, but first, let’s talk about how remarketing actually works.


Like many things in life, retargeting only works if you’ve got cookies.

Cookies, in this case, do  not mean chocolate chip or snickerdoodle. They are instead tiny files left on your hard drive by every website and social media platform you visit. These cookies don’t cause your device any harm; they just chill there, and like ET, they phone home and let the mothership (well…mother site) know that you’ve been there. While they’re chilling, however, they’re also acting as a beacon for ads related to that website. 

Yes, that’s why you’re still seeing ads for those gloves you looked at two weeks ago.

Let’s say a fleet manager searching for repair and maintenance services in your region lands on your shop’s website. They browse and perhaps make a mental note to explore more later. Your website, meanwhile, leaves that tiny cookie on their device. 

Life happens. The fleet manager forgets to make a follow-up website visit. But they keep seeing ads for your site—on Google and even on Facebook! These ads, which showcase your shop’s name and services, keep you top of mind. When the fleet manager is ready to seek out a repair shop again, they’re going to remember your name first, because, well, it’s been right in front of them.

If we wanted to compare it to real life, imagine your fleet manager as a window shopper, staring into your storefront and admiring some of your goods. They walk off…but a flock of tiny birds follows them, occasionally chirping your store’s name.

Actually, that sounds pretty creepy. We’ll just stick with cookies.


Our founder, Nick Adams, pointed out that diesel customers are “not always immediate, high-intent customers.” A fleet manager is trying to keep up with or get ahead on preventive maintenance; their research, once begun, can last for months. 

You don’t want people to forget your shop as soon as they leave your website or social media pages, right? That would defeat the purpose of all your marketing. Most customers in our industry don’t take action the first time they visit a website—that’s just the sad truth.

And if potential customers don’t remember you, they aren’t going to be booking service with you. They need…well…little reminders. 

Again: Retargeting keeps you top of mind.

Think about how many repair shop websites a fleet manager can look at in six months.

You want them to remember you. Retargeting is a subtle way to help you do that.


Unless you’re a ginormous corporation that’s planning on running zillions of retargeting ads, you probably don’t need to hire someone specifically for this role. Someone with a lot of experience as a marketing manager or Paid Media Specialist will have the retargeting chops your shop requires. This person could be a full-time employee or a contractor limited to a specific number of hours.

They’ll plan out your retargeting campaigns and create ads for each platform you want to use. Your choices, of course, include Google and Bing, but also the various social media platforms available. You may try all of them or just a few; whoever handles your retargeting will be studying the performance of each campaign and will determine where your ideal customers are going after they visit your site — and they’ll do their best to get them back.

Since many retargeting ads require graphics, whoever handles your retargeting efforts should probably be comfortable with graphic design (or, y’know, you might have to get a graphic designer, too). There are also inexpensive or free tools out there to help you make decent graphics!

Needless to say, retargeting can be a big part of any shop’s marketing efforts…which means you’re going to want to pay this person accordingly. Marketing managers, as we noted before, can earn between $87,473 and $146,522. Social media specialists, who also can handle retargeting—at least on the social media end—typically earn between $36,000 and $65,000.

If you’re mentally doing some adding and multiplication in an effort to see how much all this will cost, we can suggest a better way—the Dieselmatic way. You’ll benefit from our expertise in retargeting, as well as social media, Google Business, SEO optimization, and much more. AND you won’t have to pay a bunch of salaries on top of your existing expenses.

Sound good? Want to know more? Let’s talk—we’d be happy to learn more about your shop and how we can get you in front of more potential customers!

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Suz Baldwin
Suz Baldwin