Brand retar­get­ing is a great way to take another shot at cus­tomers and their busi­ness. Because you already know these cus­tomers are, at least, some­what inter­ested in your prod­uct, you have a bet­ter chance of hit­ting the tar­get i.e. mak­ing a sale. It’s like being an archer who misses the tar­get on the first shot. He’s got a bet­ter chance of hit­ting the tar­get the sec­ond time around because he has already tested the cir­cum­stances and can adjust. Brand retar­get­ing does the same thing, for mar­keters; it allows them to adjust.

Remar­ket­ing and retar­get­ing are terms that—for our purposes—can be used inter­change­ably. Although remar­ket­ing usu­ally refers to search and retar­get­ing usu­ally refers to ban­ner ads, we will not make that dis­tinc­tion here. Both terms fol­low the same prin­ci­ple of see­ing a customer’s inter­est and pur­su­ing it.

Brand retar­get­ing occurs on nearly every mar­ket­ing plat­form. Once you see that a cus­tomer has inter­est, you use brand remar­ket­ing to pur­sue that inter­est in the even­tual hope that your per­sis­tence will yield a con­ver­sion. Remar­ket­ing cam­paigns are best run in a col­lab­o­ra­tive envi­ron­ment. The point of remar­ket­ing is to under­stand cus­tomer inter­est in your product.

Con­cern­ing remar­ket­ing, you should not limit your­self in any mar­ket­ing field. If a cus­tomer expresses inter­est via Google search, there is no rea­son that you can­not show that cus­tomer a ban­ner ad later on. It is essen­tial to share a cookie pool between all dig­i­tal mar­ket­ing plat­forms so that you can effec­tively remar­ket and reach as many of the poten­tial cus­tomers as you can.

SEM (i.e. paid search) can jump­start remar­ket­ing cam­paigns. Peo­ple turn to search for solu­tions to issues or prob­lems. When searchers can­not sim­ply find their solu­tions, SEM can help. When a con­sumer clicks on an SEM ad, mar­keters then know that this cus­tomer is inter­ested in that ad and ads like it. Mar­keters should know that a searcher intends to find a solu­tion and should help this con­sumer find it with as lit­tle work as possible.

Remar­ket­ing cam­paigns can auto­mat­i­cally do this, but search mar­keters have the abil­ity to pur­sue poten­tial leads man­u­ally. A mar­keter must decide whether to put a cus­tomer on the “action track” or “nur­ture track.” The action track is when a mar­keter takes imme­di­ate action on a cus­tomer, such as with a phone call, a mes­sage, or some other form of action. The nur­ture track is when the mar­keter tries to move the cus­tomer into buy­ing later on. Cus­tomers on the nur­ture track are less likely to buy now than cus­tomers on the action track.

Remar­ket­ing is a tech­ni­cal and cre­ative pur­suit. There is an art to it, as well as a mech­a­nism. Cus­tomers’ deci­sions can be del­i­cate, and cus­tomers are fickle. The mar­keter must live in the zone between art and mechan­ics, try­ing not to focus too much on cold leads, and try­ing not to be too pushy on hot ones. You should always be look­ing to improve and adjust remar­ket­ing campaigns—that way you can hit more bull’s-eyes and make more sales.

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