What Is Remarketing And How Does It Work?

There’s plenty of market research out there exploring consumer psychology and what it takes to turn moderate interest into a final sale. One of the things that this research has demonstrated is that customers need to feel that they know your brand, its reputation and its products in order for them to be confident enough to make a purchase.

This research has given some marketing gurus the confidence to speak in very specific terms. One example of this is the oft-quoted ‘Rule of Seven’ – an old adage that says a potential customer needs to see a marketing message seven times before making a purchase.

The reality is certainly less cut and dry than this. Some customers will feel confident enough to make a purchase after one or two interactions, while others will exercise more scepticism. Even so, the underlying spirit is worth considering. There’s certainly no question that increasing visibility between a brand and its customers is going to be good for the bottom line. This is where tactics like remarketing come into play.

Remarketing Helps Brands Boost Their Visibility

One way that brands work to boost their visibility and ultimately build trust with their target customers is by working to initiate more touch points between the brand and consumers. The more targeted this approach is, the more effective it’s likely to be. Enter the role of remarketing.

Remarketing is a process through which advertisers work to turn window shoppers into paying customers. It accomplishes this by singling out those customers who have already expressed an interest in a particular brand (or in the types of products or services it offers) and showing them more ads.

Once a customer has tipped their hand to indicate that your products are relevant to them, you can begin to pursue them more aggressively with an online marketing campaign. Rather than wasting your efforts (and resources) on customers who haven’t demonstrated explicit interest, you can double down on those who are much more likely to make a purchase in the coming days or weeks.

That’s the spirit of remarketing. In the next section, we’ll get into the details of how we can use the online marketing tools available to us to put this strategy into effect.

This Is How Remarketing Works

Have you ever had the feeling that a particular company seems to be following you around online? Whether you’re reading the morning news on ABC Australia, checking your Facebook profile at lunch or shopping on Amazon, you seem to keep seeing the same two or three ads over and over. And even more strangely, those ads seem vaguely relevant. Weren’t you considering buying a product like that a few days ago?

Far from a coincidence, that sense of being ‘followed’ is actually a product of remarketing – and companies accomplish it by leaving a digital token (called a ‘cookie’) on your computer. This cookie lets advertisers know which products and services you’ve shown an interest in, and it customises your ad experience accordingly.

The presence of these cookies makes remarketing possible. You may have noticed that some websites notify you of their cookie policy, which is essentially their way of securing the user’s implicit consent. These bits of information deposited on your browser can then be used to determine what ads are shown to you in the future.

But this is only one piece of the puzzle. In order for remarketing to work, there also needs to be some cooperation between advertisers. As we’ll see in the next section, this is made possible through large online platforms related to search and social media.

Remarketing Expands Your Advertising Presence to Search Engines and Beyond

Overarching advertising infrastructure makes remarketing possible. One of the most powerful advertising channels is Google AdWords. This is true for three major reasons:

Google is able to compile a great deal of information related to specific users’ search and browsing history.
The search giant can easily insert ads at key touch points, such as when users are searching for the same type of product for a second, third or subsequent time.

Millions of websites and hundreds of thousands of apps use AdWords to display ads.

The latter is important because it means that your reach will exceed the Google search page. Some websites set up static ads that they sell directly to advertisers – and these appear the same for everyone. But many more opt to essentially lease that space out to Google, let the search giant determine which ads appear there, and simply collect a percentage of the revenue generated as a result. And of course, the fact that Google owns YouTube means that AdWords features prominently on that platform, as well.

Google offers the greatest single remarketing outlet in Australia, but it’s by no means alone. Bing is also a significant player in Australian search, and they provide remarketing services. As we’ll see in the next section, there are also major remarketing opportunities on social media sites.

Remarketing through Facebook Can Also Be Lucrative

Australians spend a lot of time on Facebook. Recent polls suggest that around 95 per cent of Australians have an account and access the site an average of 12.5 hours per week. That number of hours is rising dramatically, too – up around 50 per cent from the previous year.

If you focus all of your marketing energy on Google AdWords and Bing Ads, you’ll be missing out on this significant slice of time that your target customers spend online. Fortunately, Facebook offers its own remarketing service that is available specifically on the social media platform.

Facebook remarketing works according to the same principles listed above. The site’s users visit leave cookies behind. And if a particular advertiser has a remarketing account with Facebook, those users will be shown more ads when interacting with Facebook.

We Can Help

We assist our clients with Google AdWords management and social media marketing. As part of these services, we also configure and manage remarketing campaigns that have been fine-tuned for success. It’s a simple but effective way to increase the value of our services.

We have extensive experience designing and implementing online marketing campaigns. We understand that a successful remarketing initiative is about more than simply opening an account with the advertiser and hoping for the best. It’s also extremely important that the content of your ads has been thoughtfully crafted to walk users through the process of getting to know and learning to trust your brand.

If you would like to learn more about remarketing and how it can be used to enhance your advertising efforts, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

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