Remarketing, Audiences & More

This week Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro) came up with yet another great question set titled “Remarketing, Audiences & More.” The following is the transcribed Streamcap from the live chat:

Q1: At this point, is there a reason why remarketing and audience targeting WOULDN’T be a part of your PPC strategy? Why?

  • Only reason I can think of is having very small audience sizes that you can’t serve ads to. – Andrew Bethel (@AndrewPPC)
  • Niche client campaign where traffic is mixed between general audience and their customers. Even “Leads” are general and not specifically client customers. – James Svoboda (@Realicity)
  • Only one I can think of is budget. – Michael Fleming (@SEMFlem)
  • There may be a reason out there to not do remarketing, but I haven’t come across it yet. – Kirk Williams (@PPCKirk)
  • Certain clients are restricted by industry or by paranoia of google. – Gil Hong (@Gil__Hong)
  • If you sell sensitive products or services…but then again Google may not show your ads anyway. – Matt Umbro
  • I’ve found that lawyer clients can be tricky for Remarketing campaigns. – JD Prater (@jdprater)
  • Only if I ever decide to move into adult advertising. – Roxana Hassel (@RoxanaHassel)
  • Hard to find a good reason. Maybe lack of resources to create good image ads? – Joe Martinez (@MilwaukeePPC)
  • If I’ve tried it and it doesn’t work for that account. – Steve Cameron (@adventcom)
  • The upside isn’t as strong when you’re *Only* on Non-Brand, but I can’t think of a reason why I wouldn’t. – Leo Sussan (@lsussan)
  • We see certain audiences that don’t work so well, but those that work well give us no reason to stop. All about testing. – Sam Gordon (@SamGordonPPC)
  • Not enough audience or sensitive topic. – Theresa Zook (@I_Marketer)
  • I can think of two. 1. Discrete products (one time purchases). 2. Not profitable. – Travis Phipps (@phipps)
  • Always do it! We occasionally run into code issues w/ certain sites–can delay things at times. – Amanda Sides (@amanda_sides)
  • Now that Analytics allows you to edit name & duration of lists there isn’t much reason not to build. – Tyler Purcell (@tylerpurcell)
  • Everything is going so well that you can’t possibly handle more business. – John Budzynski (@Budzynski)

Q2: At what point in account management do you begin remarketing? Why?

  • As soon as you have a large enough audience list to show ads to. – Andrew Bethel
  • Almost immediately, I’ll layer Bid-Only audiences on everything. – Leo Sussan
  • As soon as the lists allow – in most cases – for some it may be more seasonal. – Steve Cameron
  • Build lists right away, even if no plans to launch remarketing anytime soon. – James Svoboda
  • ASAP. Because remarketing works most of the time. – Roxana Hassel
  • As soon as the strategy and campaign are in place…it’s on! – Joe Martinez
  • List building should be immediate. You can even collect some pseudo RLSA data for your text campaigns while you’re at it. – Gil Hong
  • When audience, budget, & client strategy permit! – Theresa Zook
  • With ecomm clients I start dynamic remarketing, RDSA, and shopping cart abandoment remarketing right away. – Matt Umbro
  • I start to look at remarketing right off the bat when I set up a campaign. No reason to not start testing audiences immediately. – Sam Gordon
  • Launch when you understand the client and their audience. Don’t rush it too soon. Also, don’t launch is you suck at Remarketing. – James Svoboda
  • As soon as you have identified a strategy to recapture that audience. Strategy & testing is key here. – JD Prater
  • With a new PPC account, 1st step is to verify remarketing tagging is added. Collect information now. Then, decide later on plan. – John Ellis (@JohnWEllis)
  • Starting setting up lists and applying RLSA lists to existing campaigns immediately. Then review later to optimize. – Amanda Brown (@AmandaBrown_SEM)
  • I’ll start creating audiences right away for various categories & products, even if don’t start immediately. – Matt Umbro
  • If budget allows I always recommend adding in remarketing strat. from get-go. Can’t hurt to test –> analyze –> make reccos. – Katy Pit (@katypit)
  • And I set a main list to the max 540 days just so I’ve got everyone somewhere. – Steve Cameron
  • Do you have the client install the dynamic remarketing code? Or do they already have it in place? – JD Prater
    • If it isn’t already in place I ask them to implement. – Matt Umbro
  • The other thing RLSA is useful for, is detecting tagging issues. If tag falls off, lists decrease in size, and you can date it. – Leo Sussan
  • Begin remarketing immediately. If nothing else, start building the list. – Travis Phipps
  • I look at top pages in Analytics as the source for my RLSA audiences since I know they will grow faster. – Matt Umbro
  • Right away. To clients: “Tell me why you DON’T want to immediately serve to highly-targeted, pre-screened prospects.” – Matt Vaillancourt (@SEM_PPC_MattV)
  • Immediately. Get code up & lists set up before conversations. Then as soon as creative is ready we launch. Usually hardly ever a reason to hold off. (other than budget/client priorities) – Amanda Sides
  • As soon as we can get the client to approve the strategy and ad designs. – John Budzynski
  • Remarketing can start right away since it encompasses all site traffic. I usually get it rolling within the first 2 months. – Michael Knight (@MichaelAKnight)

Q3: Specifically in Google, how do you decide which audiences to create?

  • Besides the obvious (cart abandonment/etc) look at site navigation & analytics to identify main categories/pages/products. – Kirk Williams
  • Depends on client but common are completes/incompletes, bounces and higher engagement. The time windows. – Steve Cameron
  • Prioritize by greatest lost/cross/upsell opportunity then start segmenting duration of the list. – Gil Hong
  • First check with client to see what’s most important to them. Then check GA for highest performing pages. Joe Martinez
  • Start with “All Visitors”, at least for small clients with low traffic. segment out from there if we need to. – John Budzynski
  • I use cohorts & custom segments in GA (assuming there’s enough data.) – JD Prater
  • #1 Conversions: sales & leads. #2 Engagements: Add-to-carts, social interactions, subscribers. #3 Everyone else. – James Svoboda
  • GA to determine which audiences will likely perform best. Combine with cart abandon/etc at different member duration. – Sam Gordon
  • Identify main categories/pages/products, but also pages with both low traffic + high CVRs. – Katy Pit
  • Start with all visitors, then depending on if the client has recurring customers either remarket to converting or noncovnerting. – Amanda Brown
  • Intuition/logic/experience. There’s no “one size fits all”. – Steve Gibson
  • a) “LP X visitors” minus “LP X’s Thank You pg visitors” b) “Prod/service X page(s) visitors” minus “Any PPC TY page visitors”. – Matt Vaillancourt
  • Volume is big factor on remarketing audience builds. Segmenting is only theory w/ low volume. Every slice is a smaller piece of pie. – John Ellis
  • Obv will vary but leads that didn’t also convert, cart abandoners & customers from past seasons are favorites. – Amanda Side
  • All visitors, 1 for each conversion & then break down categories. If you name them consistantly it doesn’t hurt to have alot. – Tyler Purcell

Q4: What is the most important advice you can share regarding Facebook audience targeting? Why?

  • Get as much information from the client as possible, Facebooks targeting is pretty good and you can get REALLY specific. – Lawrence Jones (@HomeOfJones)
  • Start thinking Demographics with Facebook. You can use it to identify your customers and target them by uniqueness. – James Svoboda
    • Yes, can advertise to who they are, not just what they do. – Kirk Williams
    • Yes – if a segment like the Beatles (for example) gives opportunity for specific ad copy with a great hook. – Steve Cameron
  • Segmentation. – Steve Cameron
  • Look-a-like audiences, laser beam targeting (think employees of companies, etc), & so much more. Lots of fun. – Travis Phipps
  • Test the different targeting methods – interests vs job titles vs fans of a specific page, etc. to find the best ROI. – Michael Fleming
  • Test multiple audiences, ad copy and images to see what sticks and resonates with your audience. – JD Prater
  • The more you know about the audience, the more narrowed and precise your audience can be, which leads to better results. – Michael Knight
  • Keep user intent in mind with your audience creation. Is the ad relevant to the audience or just white noise? – Gil Hong
  • Remember your targeting a person, not keywords. – JD Prater
  • Like anything, it might not work well. Leave emotion at the door. (some ppl get emotionally attached to Facebook). – Matt Vaillancourt
  • Think target persona. Mom over 35? What groups would she belong to, what would she post about? – Amanda Sides
  • Start from research. Test. Use more of what works. – Roxana Hassel
  • I think about Facebook like direct mail mailing lists. – Steve Gibson
  • Also break up campaigns by how you want the data. Location? Age? Facebook reporting has a long way to go, make it work for you. – Amanda Sides
  • Be ultra specific in messaging. I tend to look at ads that reference items pertinent to me, ie: Pats winning the Super Bowl! – Matt Umbro
  • Start with your most valuable audiences…so much scale there to target them…know they will perform best. Work from there. – Dave Schwartz
  • Add date/time details when applicable. Makes add super relevant/timely (i.e. sale start/ end dates, “in 2 hours”). – Katy Pit

Q5: What is your stance on the notion that audience targeting is the future of paid search? Why?

  • Makes total sense. There is more and more data being voluntarily given up every day in the name of convenience. – Sam Gordon
  • If it is going be as good as Facebook demo targeting with Adwords backend usability then please come quickly. – Kirk Williams
  • It’s a part of the future of paid search, but keywords have current intent behind them that you just can’t replace. – James Svoboda
  • Just like with targeting ads for devices, showing the right audience the right ad will no doubt increase conversions. – Azeem Ahmad (@AzeemPPC)
  • Audience targeting continues to become more important and PPC pros will need to adapt, but keywords will always be relevant. – Mattt Umbro
  • For now, keywords still provide a greater indicator for search intent. Although audience + keywords are awesome! – Gil Hong
  • I think its coming. It will make us get more specific and understand our audiences better. – Matthew Lloyd (@MaLloyd20)
  • Thats what we’re supposed to be trying to do with the display network, surely… focussing on an audience through targeting. – Steve Cameron
  • The question is, what better identifies a prospect: what they’ve done in the past, or what they’re searching for now? – Steve Gibson
  • Audience/behavioral targeting will continue to grow, but it will always be imperative to collaborate that info w/ topics/KWsh. – Michael Knight
  • Not sure its the future but it should be a part of everyones strategy since the same query shouldn’t have the same value. – Dave Schwartz (@davesch7)
  • Extremely powerful, targeting the right person at the right time = better results. – Jonathan Ng (@ThankYouJon)
  • Also, RLSA is the 1st block in building that bridge. – James Svoboda
  • It’s coming. I think its a matter of how “good” the demo data will be. Everyone’s logged into FB, not everyone’s logged into G. – Amanda Brown
  • There will always be a place for kws but nice to have options when search intent isn’t obvious. The combination is a win win. – Amanda Sides
  • Obviously not forgetting keywords, which for me will always retain high relevancy. – Azeem Ahmad
  • Audience targeting will def be a part of search layered onto KWDs. Engage the audience with custom messaging + bidding strat. – Christi Olson (@ChristiJOlson)
    • I see why Shopping doesn’t need you to target keywords, but it’s a cluster without them. – James Svoboda
  • It’s part of the future but not THE future. PLA-format rolling out to non-ecom is THE future, methinks. Big $$$ for engines. – Matt Vaillancourt
    • Eventually I think Google will be its own marketplace, but that’s a topic for another day. – Matt Umbro
  • Personalization is the future of marketing if we all accept we have no privacy rights. – Bryant Garvin (@BryantGarvin)
  • If you were renting a mailing list, would you pay more for a demographic list, or list of people who were hot leads? – Steve Gibson
  • So many of us in PPC focus on the conversion, and forget about building brands and helping educate people about our products. By doing broader interest based marketing, or demographic marketing & focusing on educating we can remarket people through funnel. – Bryant Garvin

Q6: What are you personally doing to test audience targeting in your campaigns (if you are at all)?

  • Honestly, I just let the various audiences run, and then I change bid mod. % up or down. I don’t get too crazy. – Sam Gordon
  • Pitching for new, audience-specific banners. Current banners are rather general & meh. – Matt Vaillancourt
  • I love this question– it’s part of my SMX West pres. 🙂 Audiences + PPC are like an onion, it’s all about layers. Layer your audiences with custom messaging + custom bidding. Use Audiences to target broader keywords (up the funnel). – Christi Olson
  • FB: What combinations of targeting & messaging work best for different ages? AdWords: test bid modifiers when you can. – Amanda Sides

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More PPC Chats

Don’t forget to stay tuned for the next #PPCchat on Tuesday at 12 noon Eastern, 9 am Pacific and 5pm in the UK. Same Chat time, same Chat channel.


Check out the PPC Chat Twitter list to see and connect with all current and prior participants.

• Matt Umbro (@Matt_Umbro)
• James Svoboda (@Realicity)
• Paul Kragthorpe (@PaulKragthorpe)
• Amanda Brown (@AmandaBrown_SEM)
• Amanda Sides (@amanda_sides)
• Andrew Bethel (@AndrewPPC)
• Azeem Ahmad (@AzeemPPC)
• Bryant Garvin (@BryantGarvin)
• Christi Olson (@ChristiJOlson)
• Dave Schwartz (@davesch7)
• Gil Hong (@Gil__Hong)
• JD Prater (@jdprater)
• Joe Martinez (@MilwaukeePPC)
• John Budzynski (@Budzynski)
• John Ellis (@JohnWEllis)
• Jonathan Ng (@ThankYouJon)
• Katy Pit (@katypit)
• Kirk Williams (@PPCKirk)
• Lawrence Jones (@HomeOfJones)
• Leo Sussan (@lsussan)
• Matt Vaillancourt (@SEM_PPC_MattV)
• Matthew Lloyd (@MaLloyd20)
• Michael Fleming (@SEMFlem)
• Michael Knight (@MichaelAKnight)
• Roxana Hassel (@RoxanaHassel)
• Sam Gordon (@SamGordonPPC)
• Steve Cameron (@adventcom)
• Theresa Zook (@I_Marketer)
• Travis Phipps (@phipps)
• Tyler Purcell (@tylerpurcell)

Remarket-king of Streamcaps

This is a guest post by Paul Kragthorpe; works at WebRanking in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Connect with Paul @PaulKragthorpe, and Google Plus.

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