The future of effective traffic right now with what you’ve got available is remarketing. For us in our business, it has been a really big game changer.
Using Remarketing to “plug the holes in your bucket”
When I asked for a show of hands who was doing remarketing at the Digital Marketing Summit last year, less than half the room were doing it. Now that’s an advanced group in the business community…and less than half were taking advantage of this powerful traffic strategy.
In my eyes, for 2015, going mobile and getting that sorted in your business should be a major priority. Number 2, should be getting remarketing up and running.
Because at the moment, you’re most likely spending money on advertising, correct? And let’s say for example, you had a 5% conversion rate (so 5% of people were buying on your site or filling in your web form and signing up for your high price consulting services or agency services or whatever it is you do). But what that also means is, 95 out of 100 people are actually leaving and you’ve got no way of communicating with them again. Unless of course, you have remarketing place whereby you cookie them, and then you can advertise to them again. It’s effective, and it’s cheaper and it’s more targeted because you know those people are already interested in the product or the service or expert content that you have.
So let’s look at the set up and how it works in more detail for any beginners who might be reading this (if you’re advanced, you could skip the next paragraph and jump straight down to ‘The New Power List – Building a List of Cookies’).
What is Remarketing and How Does it Work?
So here is how it works: someone, visits your website and either they take a course of action or they don’t. As they navigate around or as they leave your website, they get a little piece of code installed on their browsers that allows you to advertise to them to them once they leave. You can then advertise to them via Facebook or Google or SiteScout (any of those kind of networks) as they navigate around the web.
Really, those are the three big networks that you need to think about. Google has remarketing cookies and so does Facebook and SiteScout. There’s a whole bunch more but I’m just trying to 80-20 everything down. Each of these is different. If you think of them as ‘tools in your toolbox’, each can do different things. There’s different rules around them and I’ll try and make that clearer for you as well. But effectively, using these platforms to remarket to your prospects, helps fill the holes in your marketing bucket. If you are just getting started then Facebook Remarketing may be the easiest, then Google. Sitescout can be great especially if you are in a market that Facebook and Google don’t like or a market where they have strict compliance rules.
The New Power List – Building a List of Cookies
This is a big mind shift – If you think about it over the last five or ten years in the world of marketing, everyone has been focused on a need to build a list of subscribers – and don’t get me wrong, a list of subscribers is great. (A list of customers is even better, but I go more into that on my ‘Trip Wire’ blog). But now, we need to also shift our mind and we need to think about how to be building a list of cookies as well. That’s a new concept for a lot people. So essentially it’s a list of people that have been to our website that we can now advertise to again in a very, targeted way.
Super Targeted Advertising
The reason why remarketing to a list of cookies based on their behaviour on your website is so powerful, is because you can show them different messages than the general public. For example, if we know that they’re already interested in this product or service, we can say, “do you like so and so? Have you checked out this?” That kind of thing. The point is, it doesn’t have to be general broadcast/mass message type of marketing message.
Segmenting your cookie lists for maximum impact
Think about building a list of website visitors. This allows you to segment and advertise to people based on interest (there’s a whole bunch of other different ways but one I love is advertising based on interest). You could set up a group that is ‘all website visitors to your website in the last 180 days’, but it’s not really that great. Here’s how you could make it better: Let’s say your website was pets.com. So you could see how if someone has visited pets.com, you could remarket an ad to them. But what about people that had been to the pets.com/dogs page? Could you see how you could give those people a better ad that could be more relevant to what they’re doing, or the same for the cats people or the gerbil people? : )
Here’s an example of where we’ve done it in the Sheds’ industry:
We actually learned a bit about this industry from the amazing team at Grant Sheds. You’ll find that the guy who’s interested in a fertilizer shed may not necessarily be the same guy who’s interested in a hay shed. He may be interested in a farm shed, that kind of thing. So if they hit that main page, for example the ‘farm machinery’ page, then we give him a message directly about that particular valuable farm machinery “Aussie tough shed is built to last”. But then, for example with the next one over which is hay farmers, the message changes to, “Protect your profits.”
So can you see how that message is talking directly to them? Because if they’ve gone to all that effort to produce the hay, if they don’t have a good shed over it, it can all go to south. So showing the right message to the right people is key, and you can do that with remarketing.
But Here’s where it gets even better….
And now, you can also think about activity. What activities have they done? We could look at all the site’s visitors to clothing.com/shirts in the last 14 days. Because we could give them a better message than just everyone who visited clothing.com, and then what about all site visitors that got to clothing/checkout? We could also then build another audience of people that actually go through to the “thanks” page.
So now we know everyone who went to the “Shirts” section, we know everyone who went to the “Checkout” page, and then we know everyone who got to the “Checkout thanks” page. So what that now allows us to do is only advertise to people that were interested in shirts, got to the checkout but didn’t actually buy. Can you how sophisticated that you can get with your marketing and how granular you can get? And you don’t need to spend big bickies on this. With a lot of these, you can run little campaigns, $4 a day budget. This is just really, really, efficient-type advertising once you get going.
Dynamic remarketing is where you can show people better ads for the exact product that they were just looking at, and this is done by Google AdWords. It’s wickedly cool.
We also love this, which is brand remarketing.
So this is Santosha, a yoga teacher training company that we’ve worked with quite successfully over the last couple of years. If someone visits their website homepage, then we’re hitting them with these different banners. You’ll notice on the banners, they’ve got call to action buttons like, “Take action today” “Start today” ,“Learn More”. They’ve got also branding. So we’re future-pacing them. Can you see how we’re showing them what the course is going to look like and it’s all very beautiful and nice, well-branded. Then we’ve got messages that tell them what to do as far as becoming a yoga instructor. These remarketing banners which combine branding with a direct response call to action have been massively successful for us.
Combining Remarketing with Nurture
Another angle is to nurture and have multiple touches with your prospects using authority content. I learned this from Ryan Deiss, actually. When people opt-in to your list and they become part of your marketing funnel, ideally what you want to do is give them some really good pillar post, what we call ‘Authority Content’ or ‘Indoctrination Content’. How this works is, someone gets on your list, you then send them three or four main messages that you really wanted to get across about, how you guys are awesome at this and that, and then you’d send an example of a way you’ve done it before and really, helped someone out.
And it doesn’t just have to be all about emails….
Rather than just giving them email messages, now once they’ve hit the “Thank you” page that they’ve opted in, you could start a small Facebook remarketing campaign and give them ads that show them, “Did you check out this video? Did you see this awesome post on how Mary was able to reduce her mortgage by x”. Combining multiple medias (so email as well as remarketing) becomes very powerful.
You can also progress people through your marketing funnel. So for example, if they got to this step but didn’t get to that step, then showing them an ad saying, “Oh, did you check out that video?” Or “Our product launch is about to close now.” This is an example from Perry Marshall as well as one from Ryan Deiss:
“We’re closing it down now,”. The other one is saying, “Did life get in the way? You forgot to take advantage of this.” which is a politically correct way of saying, “Hang on, you didn’t progress through the funnel,” which is what they’re doing there with that languaging.
Using remarketing with Social Proof
Here again, in the yoga example, one thing we’re doing really well there is we’re building trust through social proof.
So if someone visits the main sales page of the Yoga Teacher Training Course but then they don’t end up going on to the “Thank you” page, then what we do is we show them these kind of Facebook ads but these aren’t selling anything, they’re not confrontational at all. This is really just saying, “Check out what other students have had to say. Watch these videos.”
Then when you go over to those pages, they’re really well-produced videos and you’re watching the people talk about this amazing journey that they went on in Bali and how they spent a month there and they actually went there to learn Asana and a whole bunch of poses but what they came away with it was a whole enlightenment and a spiritual thing that they never knew that they were going to get, plus friends for life and all that kind of stuff. You watch these videos and it gives you tingles down your spine and it really makes you want to go, “Damn, I’m gonna do that.” So well produced social proof video can work great with remarketing.
Obviously, we’ve got really rich media in video and really strong customer stories that complement what’s going on here. But previously, I don’t think a lot of people have really thought about complementing what’s going on with using remarketing to just keep progressing people along or to build trust, build rapport. If you can create rich media, it’s worth doing.
Again, I need to point out, this is all done on small budgets like $2 or $3 a day. But the beauty about it is, you start to get a compounding effect. Think about when a big Hollywood company brings out a movie. Did they just do one media, like just TV? No. They’re hitting you with billboards and they’re hitting you with YouTube ads, etc., and hit you with multiple touches as soon as possible. So you should be thinking about that with your branding as well and with your list building and your authority content, authority content pieces. S
My Prediction for The future – Cookie Exchanges
Where do I think this is all going? I mean, it’s already starting to happen. I’ve blogged before about DSP’s which means demand-side platforms, those big trading desks. What’s going to happen is DMP’s, the data management platform, so a cookie exchanges. So say for example, James over here, he’s got great site and it really works well for my market. If he’s made his cookies available on this data exchange, then I can advertise to visitors of his website. Does that make sense? How cool that is going to get? So effectively, if your competitors sell their cookies or rent their cookies, you’ll be able to advertise to site visitors who’ve already been to their website which is where I believe things are going.
Managing advertising budgets and expectations
One of the other things that I’ve really seen over the last year or so is that the Internet is aging and maturing so it’s a more mature marketing medium. So if you think about radio, TV, newspaper, that kind of thing, people don’t expect it to be a cash-spewing machine. But the internet, their expectations are, “Oh, I wanted it to be a cash-spewing machine.” But the reality is you can still do that if you’ve got a well-architected funnel and a big back-end. But the reality is it might take multiple touches now.
You may need to think about, “Oh Google ad costs are rising so much.” You might need to think about, “Well, you know what? I might not get an ROI on this first initial ad spin, “But that’s okay because I know I’m gonna cookie them and then I know I’m going to show them memorable different offers over time, memorable different opportunities,”. Know the numbers in your business so that you know what you can afford to spend on a lead. Even if you don’t break even on day one, it doesn’t really matter.
Two-Stepping your search traffic
The problem with this can be is that it’s not going to convert as well as a proper dedicated landing page or squeeze page.
This is where is two-stepping comes in.
What you can do is, send search traffic to a Google compliant page and you will get a return on investment. You may not get the return on investment you’re ultimately after. But thinking big picture and two-stepping your traffic, now you can do things like put the Facebook cookie on that page and start to show them Facebook ads after they have left. For example, send them off to your awesome post that positions you as an expert or sends them off to your landing page for that thing or sends them off to testimonials/social proof-type pages. Ultimately, you’re sending them to a more effective landing page as the second part of the process.
So that’s what I call two-stepping your search traffic. That is going to become more and more and more common I think, until basically it becomes a norm where anytime you send Google traffic to a page, you wouldn’t NOT have a cookie on it because you’d be wasting too much money. But most people don’t do that right now. So they’re leaving a lot of money on the table.
Google and Facebook Crackdown – avoid the trap
I think everyone knows that Google has been doing this for several years. However, what we are seeing now is Facebook are banning a lot of advertiser’s accounts right now. Unfortunately, they’ve taken a leaf out of Google’s book and haven’t really been that great at communicating that they are making these changes. It’s pretty clear what Google likes and doesn’t like, but what Facebook does and doesn’t like is changing literally by the day at the moment. So it’s one keep aware of. If you’re in certain industries, for example, if you’re in anything that they consider “get rich quick” or you’re in supplements or weight loss, then you really need to trade carefully with the Facebook space. It’s really a matter of trying to keep your account alive. My advice is to try and be conservative more than trying to do risky or borderline advertising.
So here are some of the rules and regulations to summarized for you:
Google Display Network: you can’t send traffic to unless it’s a proper authority site. Facebook on the other hand, they’re happy for you to send traffic to landing pages at the moment. But I honestly, think where this is going is It will end up with a proper quality score like Google where you won’t be able to over time.
Video Sales Letter Pages: If you have a page and there’s just a video playing and it’s just got a headline/subheadline on it, Google doesn’t like that. Facebook also doesn’t allow you now to send traffic to a Video Sales Letter.
Other Landing Page elements: Facebook also hates hidden buy buttons that turn up after a certain amount of time on the page. Google hates things like exit pop ups.
The Wild West
So it’s a little bit hard to try and keep up-to-date with what they both want, but there’s a little bit of a summary of it. SiteScout is still like the Wild West. They really don’t care. So for now you can just go to town. But when you choose SiteScout, remember, because you’re inside of that big trading list and you can choose where all your traffic comes from, just don’t tick the box that says, “I want to get traffic from Google” and tick the box that says, “I want to get traffic from Facebook,” and then send them to landing pages with Video Sales Letters and hidden buy buttons and exit pops and whatever you want. You can really go to town once you’ve got a winning offer with that stuff.
Two Other Types of Remarketing
Two other really important types of remarketing are Youtube Remarketing and Facebook Video Views Remarketing. These are big subjects all on their own, so I’ll share some cool stuff with you on that coming up.
Your Next Steps
I hope that’s got you thinking about some strategies to implement with your remarketing and how to go to that ‘next level thinking’ when it comes to targeting your traffic and prospects. With the internet changing so fast, it’s more important than ever to keep growing and getting more clever and granular with your advertising, if you want to trim waste and stop leaving money on the table.
Please let us know your thoughts below. Has this been useful? How are you using remarketing in your business and has it been affective? Is there anything you are stuck on or don’t understand with remarketing that we can help with?