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Remarketing as a strategy and not a tactic

Too often remarketing campaigns are used as a lazy marketing tactic to beat potential customers into a form of submission, bored of seeing your ads and willing to do anything to just make them stop. But it doesn’t have to be that way

– thinking of remarketing as a strategy, not a tactic can provide real value for your business.

What is Remarketing?

Remarketing, also referred to as ‘retargeting’, is the process of displaying advertising in front of an audience who has already visited your website at some point in the past. Remarketing is used particularly heavily by those with ecommerce stores, where improving conversions from visit to sales is often fundamental to their success.

You’ll recognise you’re being remarketed to when you visit a store or website and suddenly find ads for that very brand or product appearing everywhere from the news stories you read, to your Facebook news feed, even within the apps you use.

How does it work?

Remarketing works by recording your visit on a website, identifying you as a particular individual, and adding you to virtual database that can be ‘retargeted’ with future advertising. Options for building remarketing audiences exist on search engines and social networks alike.

At the most basic level, remarketing tracks all visitors to a website and adds them to an audience. At the more complex level, audiences can be built based on particular pages viewed (or not viewed) or actions undertaken (or not undertaken). This allows for some pretty intelligent marketing activity to be undertaken when thinking of remarketing as a strategy, rather than a tactic.

How can I use Remarketing more intelligently?

In order to use remarketing more intelligently – as a strategy rather than a tactic – you need to consider the challenges you specifically want to address through remarketing.

11Perhaps you get loads of visitors to your blog, but your data shows very few of them go on to make a purchase.

Maybe you get loads of people viewing particular products, even adding them to their baskets, but you aren’t getting the sales you’d expect.

Or potentially you’re a service business, and despite a lot of traffic hitting your site, you fail to get the enquiries.

Each of these scenarios could be addressed through a more strategic approach to remarketing. You just need to determine the steps involved and the approach required to lead them towards your desired action.

Give me an example

In our case we defined that there was a number of steps involved in winning a new client.

Steps included attracting interest from potential customers, demonstrating our credibility as a service provider, explaining what we could do for them and obtaining an enquiry that we could act upon.

We could have opted to hit every visitor to our site with a series of remarketing adverts, shouting our brand name and a couple of regularly repeated unique selling propositions.

However, it seems unlikely that those visitors just needed to be reminded (over and over again) that we exist… they weren’t convinced the first time they visited our site that we were for them, or their need wasn’t great enough just yet (ok, there are some exceptions, perhaps the doorbell rang and they did just need a little nudge – but that seems more the exception than the rule).

So, our remarketing strategy took on a number of steps, beginning with activity that wasn’t remarketing at all.

1) Raising awareness – advertising designed to hook the interest of potential customers with content designed to ignite their interest and drive them to our website. Targeting key audience segments that were likely to be open to our message and capable of making buying decisions. A new audience, this helped us to build a pool of prospects to begin working on.

2) Building credibility – using an audience built from those who had visited specific pages of our site, for example, particular services or types of content, we began showing case studies and testimonials from past customers.

3) Making it relevant to them – using an audience of those who had recently viewed our case studies, but had not been in touch, we started to promote specific services to those potential customers, wherever possible linking those messages to their likely needs. Ads took them to specific service pages, featuring contact forms in each case.

Lead Gen4) Prompting Enquiry – utilising specific advertising objectives designed to promote conversion, including lead generation campaigns, we provided visitors to both our case studies and service sections, who had still not been in touch via our contact form, with the offer of a free one-hour consultation. We included in our audience those who had attended recent events but had not arranged a consultation.

By using remarketing as a strategy, rather than a tactic, we saw massive growth in our enquiries and saw our client base double in less than 3 months. It was so successful in fact, that we were forced to turn it off in order to deal with the interest we had developed.

So, if you’re not using remarketing as a strategy in your business perhaps it’s time to consider what you might achieve? Start by mapping out your customer journey and the role your website plays in that process.

If you need a little help getting started, fill in the contact form or call Aren on 07598 242212 for a free initial consultation.

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About the Author

I’m fascinated by how a company or organisation can change its fortunes and even undergo a transformation by looking at a challenge in a different way and by behaving in different ways.

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