1 - Prospecting / Top of Funnel / Cold - first touch point with the brand, this is where you will be spending 60-80% of your ad spend, so you fill up all the other retargeting audiences with fresh eyes and do so consistently. If you want to grow your brand, you can't just be showing your ads to the same group of people, you have to reach new audiences that haven't interacted with you before. At this stage, they get a first contact with your brand, so it’s important to take that into account when making the ad creatives - you need to present the brand, what you are selling, why its good, why they should trust you, why they should buy. Here you are using combinations of interest and behaviour targeting & a LOT of different lookalike audiences of your other custom audiences (or the new value-based lookalikes that can work REALLY well).
2 - Reactivation / Middle of Funnel / Warm - People who have engaged with your ads but haven’t reached your website yet - video viewers % audiences, page engagers custom audiences, IG engagement custom audiences. Still a pretty cold audience so you still use creatives here that do a lot of informing.
3 - Retargeting / Bottom of Funnel / Hot - People who have visited your website but haven’t yet purchased. Create custom audiences based on which pages they have visited, how long they have spent on your site, how many pages they have browsed through on your site (eg. custom audience of website visitors, that have visited at least 5 pages on your site will be a way more relevant audience than just targeting all website visitors)
4 - DPA & transactional events (product page view, add to cart, checkout, purchase)
Here, you are targeting people who have viewed a specific product or moved from the product page to any of the pages in your ecommerce flow - cart, checkout, payment methods… You can either create dynamic product ads, where the user gets served a dynamic ad with the exact product they viewed, along with similar products, that are frequently bought together, or create audiences and ads for different stages of your purchase funnel - eg. people who have added an item to cart in the last 7-14 days, but haven’t yet purchased and creating an ad with a customer testimonial about the product, how it helped them and adding a discount code for free shipping on their order :)