Remarketing Campaigns: It’s All About Transparency and Messaging

Gerard Tollefsen - June 2, 2010

Remarketing or behavioral targeting campaigns can be a tricky proposition for many businesses.  It’s important to reach out to current customers and equally as important to reach out to people who visit your site whether they complete a desired conversion or not.  With privacy issues and Facebook making headlines everyday, the last thing you want to do is come across like “Big Brother” watching your site visitor’s every move.  However, you can incorporate some basic fundamentals into a remarketing campaign to overcome any stigmatism that comes along with tracking visitor engagement.

First and foremost, be sure to have a privacy policy statement on your website clearly stating you are using a cookie based tracking system.  Google, for example, explains how to address this in their AdWords Help section as follows:

If you’re using the remarketing feature, you must have an appropriate description of your use of remarketing in online advertising. The description must be included in the privacy policies of all sites that include the remarketing tag.

The privacy policies should include the following information:

  • Third party vendors, including Google, show your ads on sites on the internet.
  • Third party vendors, including Google, use cookies to serve ads based on a user’s prior visits to your website.
  • Users may opt out of Google’s use of cookies by visiting the Google advertising opt-out page. (Alternatively you can point users to opt out of a third party vendor’s use of cookies by visiting the Network Advertising Initiative opt out page.)

Once you have that in place, the success of your remarketing campaign comes down to two basic factors: identify who you want to remarket to and the message you want to convey.  This is very important because the audience you are targeting and the message you display in your ads must be cohesive.  For example, if you are remarketing to people who visited your site, but abandoned the shopping cart, the remarketing ad copy should have a clear call to action on why it is beneficial to re-visit your website and complete their purchase.  Providing an incentive, a free giveaway or special discount code is a great way to convince that visitor they made the right decision by visiting your site in the first place and that you want their business.  If you are targeting people who visited your About Us section, ad copy detailing the strengths of your company, how long you have been in business or awards you have won can be powerful remarketing messages. 

Mapping out your strategy is important to the success of your marketing plan.  When running a remarketing campaign you must be clear with your privacy policy, you need to know your audience and create a message geared specifically to them.

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