Remarketing – Tactic or Ploy?


Today’s buzzword is: Remarketing

You HAVE to do it, your agency or consultants tell you. It’s a way to capitalize easily and cheaply on behavioral marketing in an arena you’re already using, they say.

The concept is simple. Logical. It makes sense, as all tactics do when presented by agencies, and when backed by real strategies and well thought out plans.

At the heart of it, remarketing plays on the multi-tasking ADD world of the internet. Plain and simple. Wherever you are, it is designed to remind you to come back to where you were.

But Google has an automated program, designed to suck your budget dry, and provide data analysis to back up why your consultants may have valid points in their logical explanations of what happened to your budget.

Automation is good, in moderation. Thinking cannot be replaced, and if it is being replaced, then replace your consultants (we can all press the little automation button in adwords.)

A few basics:

Remarketing is used to track visitors to your site (you can designate which pages count) and then those users will see ads for your company, ostensibly reminding them in a targeted awareness way, to return to your site and convert on whatever metric it is you wanted them to. It’s a “second level” awareness campaign, in that sense. Simple, logical, obvious.

Your remarketing might be over-automated if:

  • You’re using the same ads as in your display campaigns.
  • You don’t know which page visits, what frequency, or what duration you’re targeting.
  • You’re tracking under 10 second home page bounced visitors.
  • You’re not a gaming company and your ads appear on gaming sites.

Ok, let me explain that last one. That’s the key lead in to being over-automated.

Gamers as Examples for Remarketing

  • Are you or do you know a gamer?
  • Have you seen a gamer get distracted?
  • End of discussion.

Unless you sell women’s shoes, you need to tailor the sites you appear on. It is true, remarketing is different than regular display in that it only gets shown to previous visitors to your site. Logic would tell you that’s your audience. Logic isn’t always right, especially if you skip steps. Some people go to your site by mistake (you’d be surprised by how many). Every ad you show to someone who didn’t intend to EVER go to your site costs money, and it risks irritating the user, which could unravel a potential customer.

Regardless of the logic that these are potential customers, or your defined audience, you should, you MUST, review the sites to understand if the sites your ads appear on align with your targeted audience. If they do not, then don’t show the ad.

Remarketing “in context”

The last thing someone on a “Get out of debt” site wants to see is a Tiffany’s ad, or an ad for the bank that’s making their life miserable.

Don’t be “that” guy.

Consider your ads and your brand in the context of the user. Sure, it’s likely that a member of your audience might certainly be on a site dedicated to health and well being, and let’s face it, who doesn’t love junk food (no one’s watching you read this, it’s safe to admit it) but don’t show an ad for artificially-flavored high-fructose corn syrup brick bars on the weight loss site. Sure, we love that stuff, but we’re trying to deny ourselves and you’re not helping.

Think about the context in which your ads will be seen!

If you listen closely when you place an ad wrong you can probably hear your customer saying, “la la la la la, I’m not listening to you, la la la la la.”

on the other hand …..

If you happen to sell women’s shoes … nevermind.
There is no inappropriate context for showing those ads. 😉

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