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Getting Started with Remarketing Campaigns

The exact wording changes, but I often hear marketers say something like this:  “It takes seven times before someone remembers your message/brand/ad,” or some kind of variation of that idea. This is exactly why remarketing can be a valuable tool because it’s a way to connect with people who have already visited your website.  People leave your site without a purchase for many reasons; one may be they were simply not ready to make a decision. With remarketing, you stay at the forefront their minds by reminding them you’re here and that they considered your site recently.  The whole idea is that people who have already been to your site probably have some kind of interest in what’s on there.  They just need a gentle reminder to return!

followedThe big concern most people have about remarketing is the creepiness factor.  If people start to see your ad everywhere they go on the internet, they may start to feel they are being followed.  This is where frequency capping can be useful.  This allows you to determine a maximum number of times a unique visitor can see your ad.  There is not necessarily a right or wrong answer to this one.  Sometimes the easiest way to make a decision is the unscientific method of thinking how you would respond to repeat ads or by asking a few friends, “Hey, is it annoying to see an ad 3 times? 5 times? 8 times?”  This informal poll can at least be a starting place.

So we’ve established that irritating people by following them around online isn’t a good strategy!  Another thing to consider in your remarketing campaign is not showing up on low quality sites. (Unless of course you’re selling low quality products, which we hope you’re not doing!)  Rather than trying to come up with every single lousy site on the internet, you can use a category list in AdWords to exclude a type of website.  Later on, you can look at the placements report and see where your ad showed, then choose some specific domains to exclude.

abandoned-cartAbandoned shopping carts.  That simple phrase can cause retailers to shudder.  Site owners make improvements to their cart with simpler forms and still people abandon their carts!  When visitors put something in an online shopping cart, they are probably pretty close to buying.  To use remarketing here, create a list for anyone who was on the shopping cart page, but not the transaction completed page.  This will get to the people who didn’t complete the purchase.   If you think they may have abandoned their cart because you didn’t offer free shipping, you can create an ad with a coupon code specifically with that type of offer.  There are, of course, other issues around that.  Once visitors receive free shipping, they could come to expect that and not buy from you again unless they find a free shipping promo code online.  The reverse can also be true where they love whatever they bought so much that the shipping cost on additional purchases doesn’t sway them against buying in the future.

Did you know you can also remarket based on your e-news readers?  As long as your e-newsletter has the ability to include Google Analytics code, you can create a list to remarket to anyone who reads your e-newsletter.  You can target even more by creating an ad that is specifically related to the content in the e-news.

Be strategic about creating your lists and deciding which ads will display with which type of list.  “All visitors” is pretty broad, but may be a good place to start, especially if you are working with a small list of unique visitors.  Once your list does become large enough, think through several options.  Do you want to reach people who already bought something and give them an incentive to come back?  Or do you want to reach people who did not buy and connect with them by displaying a different type of message?  Do you have an offer for people who viewed a specific page or a specific product line?  What about your big spenders?  Is there a luxury line of goods you can advertise to that specific group? There are a number of different directions you can take with your remarketing campaign.

JUMP_JUMP_JUMP_by_NeneismeBefore you jump into remarketing, you’ll need to revisit your analytics account and change one small line of code.  This is what Google needs in order to show your ads on the Display Network platform and use your remarketing lists.  Once you do that and update your privacy policy, you’ll be ready to go.  Remember, remarketing is a great way to reach those “almost customers.”  Keep these tips in mind when you get started to increase your chance of a successful campaign.

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