"Networking" is a new column focused on the evolving roles of networks in online advertising.
Today's column is written by Richard Frankel, President, of Rocket Fuel, Inc.
- He says there’s no doubt about it
- It was the myth of fingerprints
- I’ve seen them all and man
- They’re all the same
- - Paul Simon, Graceland
One of the most popular and fastest-growing display advertising tactics is retargeting, also known as remarketing. But as with any marketing technique, retargeting can be misused, misunderstood, and abused. So, as marketers dive in to leverage this promising technique, it’s high time to examine retargeting’s potential issues.
(1) Retargeting doesn’t exist in a vacuum.
It’s a truism of marketing that advertising in multiple channels makes it hard to understand the unique effect of any particular channel. This issue is amplified online – a marketer may be using 2, 3, or even dozens of different tactics for engaging with audiences. All of these tactics will drive customers to your site. Every time someone shows up, your retargeting partner will notice him/her, and retarget them later somewhere else on the web. Some of these people will just show up because they know your brand, have a past history with the products, or are interested based on some other interaction. They too will be retargeted.
Smart marketers are trying to really understand what the true lift is provided by retargeting. This is possible – and not even that hard – by using a careful test & control methodology. By doing this you can learn what the real value of retargeting is. Rocket Fuel did this recently with IMVU, a client that runs a virtual world and virtual goods marketplace. We measured the exact economic effect of our retargeting, and built a solid, fact-based business deal around those economics. We even had a bonus learning ; certain demographics had greater lift in relative value from our advertising. This allowed us to fine-tune our targeting and focus on higher-value audiences (within the total population of re-targetable people) for the client.
Best Practice: Invest in understanding the real incremental value that retargeting brings you.