Digital remarketing, also known as retargeting, tends to be one of the most undervalued marketing channels in the digital arsenal. This is often because remarketing ads contact customers in the middle or end of the funnel, while most analytics tools focus on first or last-click attribution.
The best metaphor we’ve heard is that your remarketing campaign is your relief pitcher. It doesn’t get the shine that the starters get, and it doesn’t get the wins of closers, but without it, you’re going to lose the game. Here’s why you should value your remarketing ads and other “relief pitchers” in your marketing strategy.
The Basic Concept of Remarketing
Remarketing is based on the concept that someone is already familiar with your name, brand, or website, but something keeps them from purchasing. This might be because you sell higher-ticketed items or services that require a lot of research before buying, or because the customer got distracted before they can buy.
Remarketing ads are shown to customers who have browsed your site (generally in the past 30 days, but sometimes longer) in hopes of bringing them back to your site. They assist in keeping your name top-of-mind and closing if an email or phone call distracted them from the original sale.
These ads are ultra-effective because they can follow the user across channels and even across devices. They keep your messaging and services in front of the consumer throughout their buyer’s journey, which is an incredibly powerful tool for any company that needs leads and conversions.
How Remarketing Works
How exactly does remarketing work? This is the question most often asked by clients and customers alike. The answer lies in browser cookies.
When you visit a site that has remarketing enabled, if only for a few seconds before you bounce, a small piece of code fires and drops a “cookie” on your browser. This lets different remarketing providers, like Google, Facebook, and AdRoll know when to show a generic ad or a specific remarketing ad.
Depending on your industry, you can utilize a basic form of remarketing ads to keep your name top-of-mind, or you can get more advanced based on customer interest. Some companies, like local service providers, create a special offer in their ads to bring visitors back. An HVAC company might offer a free unit check or repair guide in their remarketing to convince people to
call. Many retail sites will actually show the items that the customer browsed and others that they might like. This is based on the belief that the customer really did want to buy that cute dress, but they couldn’t at the moment.
The cookies tend to live on the browser for 15-30 days depending on the business. During this time, companies can make the offer more rich if they don’t think they’re going to get a conversion. The HVAC company might advertise the free unit check for the first five days, and then promote a 15% off discount for the back ten.
The Benefits of Remarketing
Let’s say you develop a marketing campaign that brings 5,000 more people to your website in a month. If you generate leads from 5% of them — which is a reasonable amount — then you’ve lost 4,750 of those additional site visitors. Remarketing helps bring them back. For context, customers are ten times more likely to click on a targeted display ad over a regular display ad, and have a 50-60% higher conversion rate than normal.
It can cost a few pennies to bring someone back to your site through remarketing, but costs a few dollars to bring someone there for the first time. If you can constantly get your message in front of prospects who already have shown an interest in your brand, then your overall CPA will drop significantly.
Depending on your existing channels, you might want to be on multiple remarketing platforms or just one. Companies with a robust social presence would benefit from Facebook remarketing, while others with a well-managed paid search budget can use Google’s expansive network. Both of these audiences will behave differently, but the results can be significant when your campaigns are managed by knowledgeable professionals.
To this end, Mediagistic provides expertise in running and optimizing remarketing campaigns to increase conversion rates and generate local leads for your business. For clients with one of our Internet marketing plans, our performance marketing and social consulting teams specialize in creating local remarketing solutions for local businesses just like yours.
Ryan Smith is a Digital Strategist at Mediagistic. He has nearly 15 years of marketing communications and digital marketing strategy experience, including 10 years of international marketing, search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) and social media marketing. Connect with him on Linkedin and follow him on Twitter.