Retargeting: Explained and Simplified

Tuesday, August 30th, 2011
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All publishers know the value of data yet many struggle to do anything of value with it. Those willing to innovate are embracing the idea that intention data when paired with advertising can be turned into real revenue in real time. This concept of retargeting; showing users advertising based on their visitation patterns on your site, is an easily accountable, quick and effective tool when complimented with a media buying ability that generates new customers and upsells existing ones. For online retailers, this simply means potential customers will see their banner ads on other sites after they have left the retailers online store in hopes of driving them back for a conversion.

Retargeting is simple in its deployment: you place a small image or js pixel that interacts with the cookie of a given user on your site. Next you launch a media buy targeting only the users who have had been exposed to that pixel with a creative pertaining to your site. Routinely you show them a creative that incentivizes a purchase or action (say 10% off the product the user showed an interest in) and note whether they returned and committed an action on your portal. Often they will not only come back to your site but also purchase the product they initially abandoned. In more complex examples you may decide to show various user segments different creative advertisements to optimize their experience, catalog lifetime values of users to exclude from showing any advertising, and various other profit driving measures. This is all in the scope of retargeting.

Since the implementation is simple and the results are proven why don’t more online retailers use retargeting? Often we hear about the learning curve being steep, or the media buying economics prohibitive. Fortunately there are now companies and platforms that simplify the overall media buying process and make it affordable to online retailers of all sizes. Once a campaign is set-up and refined, very little additional work is needed on the part of the retailer; you might decide to tweak ads for seasonal trends or try new creative concepts but the pixel will never need to be replaced, reporting will stay up to date and your general optimization rules around frequency, visitation, etc. will remain effective.

Often ecommerce sites in are approached to license out their data. This might lead to some small, short-term revenue. But the sites that can take advantage of retargeting, or partner with an entity that will help them do so, have a powerful asset they can cultivate, control, and profit. Your data will not only be a tool for insight but an ongoing and growing revenue vehicle as well As you keep bringing interested customers back to your website.

This guest article was provided by Andreas Vagelatos of Anonymous Media. Anonymous Media simplifies the overall media buying process. Anonymous provides the platform and data tools to easily deploy retargeting and report on its success. They offer the full range of services to ensure your media buy goes across all major distribution channels and is optimized intelligently. Taking a highly consultative approach pairing you with seasoned experts has proven successful for retailers utilizing Anonymous. For more information, please call 646.481.4783

Coming from a medical and non-profit management background, Taryn has extensive experience in customer service and marketing. She is a Senior Account Manager for Nexternal and loves working with her clients to develop social media and marketing strategies to improve their online presence. In her spare time, she also runs a successful eCommerce jewelry and essential oils business.