How Do Remarketing Ads Work and Why Can It Help My Business?
We’re all fighting for attention. Fighting for time, fighting for eyeballs, fighting for the presence of mind. With all the different marketing blogs, podcasts, and posts out there, it’s a miracle you’re even reading this.
When advertisements and information bombard us 24-7, how do you stand out from the pack long enough to make an impression? In today’s digital marketing landscape, you’re going to need a serious strategy to have any kind of success. You’ve probably heard of the Rule of Seven, which theorizes that you need to contact a potential customer at least seven times to get them to make a purchase. Seven times! One measly little display ad is hardly going to make a dent.
That’s why remarketing can be such a powerful tool for your brand.
What is Remarketing?
Any kind of marketing effort that targets people who have already seen your brand can be considered remarketing. It’s a form of lead nurturing, increasing brand awareness and trust in your potential customers. Remarketing is an effective way to increase the number of times your potential customers see and hear from your brand.
You’ll probably also hear the word “retargeting” a lot in conversations about digital remarketing. It’s technically not the same thing, but most people use the words interchangeably anyway. So, what’s the difference?
Retargeting vs. Remarketing
Most people tend to use these terms like squares and rectangles — all retargeting is remarketing, but not all remarketing is retargeting. Recall that remarketing is any marketing that targets those who have already seen or interacted with your organization. Retargeting is a specific form of digital remarketing that involves serving ads to past visitors to your website.
For example, if someone visits your site but doesn’t make a purchase, retargeting makes it so that they’ll see ads reminding them of your brand or even the specific item they were interested in. Meanwhile, remarketing doesn’t even have to be digital — seeing a billboard for a company you’ve already heard of could technically be considered remarketing. In the digital marketing world, remarketing can often be used in reference to emails as well.
Okay, enough splitting hairs. Now that we’ve got a baseline knowledge of the important terms here, let’s dive deeper into how digital remarketing and retargeting campaigns can benefit your company. But first, you have to know how they work. Let’s start with retargeting, and then we’ll talk more in-depth about email remarketing.
How do Retargeting Ads Work?
The first step in any retargeting campaign is pretty straightforward. Basically, you put a little code on your website called a retargeting pixel. It’s just a little guy who drops a cookie into the visitor’s browser, which allows you to save their information for your retargeting efforts. Most people do this through Google Ads or a social media platform like Facebook or LinkedIn.
Then, once you have their information, the real work can begin. You need to make your ad campaign on whatever platform you choose. Select the audience you want to target — this can be as broad or as specific as you want. Marketers can target people who have been to the homepage, or they can get as granular as targeting those who have visited a specific combination of pages or during a specific date range. Once you get in there, you can explore all the different possibilities. Don’t be afraid to get creative with it! Just make sure you’re effectively targeting the right people, so they’ll get relevant ads.
Of course, then the next part is creating those relevant ads. We have some tips for that in a later section, so hold tight. This is only scratching the surface when it comes to how you can retarget your core demographics, though — if you’re interested in the topic, you can dive deep into more advanced techniques like dynamic remarketing.
Retargeting is great, but there are more options out there. Ever get an email about your shopping cart expiring soon, or reminding you of products you’ve recently viewed? Those are part of email remarketing campaigns.
Building remarketing lists is essential to this kind of strategy. If you already have a list of emails, you’re in good shape. If not, don’t worry. There are lots of ways you can get emails from visitors to your site — offer a discount to visitors that sign up for your newsletter, or require an email before they download a helpful ebook you’ve put together for them. Then, you can make email lists specific to your different remarketing efforts. For example, if you make a list of everyone who signed up for a free demo but didn’t end up buying, you can send out reminders.
There are a lot of other, more sophisticated ways to use email remarketing techniques, but these are good places to start for a beginner. Over time, you can fine-tune your remarketing campaigns until you find a mix of strategies that works for you.
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Optimizing Your Campaign
You can take some time to tweak your strategies, of course, but there are also some quick first steps you can take to make sure your remarketing efforts are as effective as possible. Here are some of them:
Have Goals in Mind
You can’t know if you’re getting better if you don’t know what you’re trying to improve. Have a specific metric you’d like to focus on before setting out on a remarketing journey. That could be something like increasing shopping cart recovery, or a whole host of other ways to measure success. Figure out what would be most beneficial to your company, and go from there.
You probably have a hunch about which sorts of ads are going to do better than others, but don’t let your gut feeling be your only guide. Gather some data to back it up. With A/B testing, you can see the relative effectiveness of different variables like subject lines and calls to action.
Make Good Ads
Just because remarketing has a special name doesn’t mean basic marketing principles don’t apply. Lean on your existing marketing knowledge here. If you’re making display ads, you want something visually striking. You always want to use good, clean copy and relevant calls to action. Even though you’re not making that all-important first impression, you still want your remarketing ads to make a good one.
How can Remarketing Ads Help my Business?
If you’re not sold by now on using remarketing as a way to raise conversion rates and engage your target audience, here are some more specific benefits of this type of strategy.
Retargeting ads only go to a small group of people who are already interested in your brand. That’ll keep pay per click costs down. They have a higher intent because they’ve already shown that they’re picking up what you’re putting down, at least a little bit.
They’ll Help You Stand Out From Your Competition
Retargeting can be extra effective for consumers who are shopping around for a product or service. You want to make sure you stay top of mind. If your competitors aren’t running retargeting ads but you are, odds are when the customer comes back to make that decision, your company will be the first they think of. You can even set a price comparison direct message to nudge potential clients in the right direction.
It’s a Good Add-on to Existing Marketing Efforts
At Beanstalk, we wouldn’t recommend retargeting or remarketing as a standalone campaign. It’s best used in conjunction with other efforts so that you’re getting those people interested in you in the first place. You can’t exactly remarket to someone who’s never been marketed to, right? Digital marketing strategies that get people to your site for their first visit pair nicely with a remarketing campaign.
The Bottom Line is, Remarketing Works
Whether you run a simple e-commerce site or a complex B2B company, you need to engage your target audience multiple times before you can count on their business. That’s why remarketing is so effective — you can use all the tools we talked about to narrow in on past website visitors, giving you another chance to win them over. Our clients have had a lot of success with remarketing, and you can, too.