Getting myself into the digital age has caused a significant amount of angst in my life. I really love taking pictures and the thing that I like least about being in this situation is that I’m now taking pictures using a crappy digital point-and-shoot camera that doesn’t really do any justice to the images that I want to capture. I used to have a really cool camera but I ended up selling it. I really regretted doing that so I found myself walking to the camera section in Best Buy.
I was standing in front of a wall filled with different kinds of DSLR cameras. Then, it struck me. Even though I really loved using different gadgets, I really knew so little about DSLR cameras. I own a high “enough” end film camera but never got into really knowing how the comparable digital cameras work. So, I started evaluating different models inside the store by looking at their prices and features. Live view,lens kits,ISO and pixel counts. I was starting to feel like I can make a really fair evaluation. This went on until I stumbled upon a DSLR brand that I’ve never heard of and judging by the size of its lens, it made the camera next to it look like a chew toy.
I wasn’t able to choose properly. After having this realization, an employee at the store came to help me get out of my confused state. “Hello sir,are you looking for a DSLR camera?” I knew this guy was going to get me out of the tangle that I was in.
“Yes, I’m looking for one that captures good images but falls within the $500-$800 range”
“Okay, what set of features do you want on your camera?” That was a really basic question but I knew that he was just getting warmed up.
“I’d love to have a camera that takes both high quality photos as well as videos.”
After that, he leaned over and started looking for a word on each card, “HD”. He jumped from one card to another just to scan for just two letters. After that, he turned to me and said, “This would be a good match for you.” And then he smiled at me as though he was able to accomplish what he needed to do to help me out.
So I thanked him for the help and went out of the section thinking that I was an idiot. I then wandered into the TV section. When I got there, a really crazy thing happens. Another sales personnel walks up to me and says, “I noticed that you were looking at DSLR cameras awhile ago sir. I’m actually the regional support manager for Canon. If you haven’t made up your mind yet, I’d love to tell you about what makes Canon EOS DSLR cameras really different from the rest.”
So I told him, “That would be cool.”
After that, he then gave me an educational bashing of different reasons why Canon is the best but as well as why buying something else is like hitting myself in the face with a hammer. Who wants to do that? After a while, I found myself looking at different Canon EOS DSLR cameras.
The Foolishness Behind A Six Second Strategy
Me purchasing a new Canon EOS DSLR camera made me realize a couple of things about the world of search and display.
First things first, search can be quite effective. Just like a sales associate, search engines look for exactly what I tell them to. And after a few seconds, they can list out what seem to be the closest fit. As Google said before, “a person using a search engine is on and off the site within six seconds.”
But just like what I did in Best Buy, this kind of approach does little to nothing to educate consumers. In fact, a search engine only does great if you’re at the end of your search. However, if you’re still in a stage where you’re still figuring out what questions you want to ask, search engines can only offer the most obvious answers. This leaves you wondering about the future of America (I’m referring to the first sales associate).
Search retargeting works like the second salesman that approached me. After a user has done a search, display ads that are relevant to his search are served as he continues to surf. To make it simple, it continues the conversation.
This is a really good thing. The ad also continues to show on sites that may not be about what the person was looking for.
Did I get upset about what the salesperson did when I went to the TV section? Nope, I was still looking for a good DSLR camera to buy. In fact, I was really glad that he had more to say about what I wanted to buy.
Did I care about the fact that he works for Canon? Of course not, instead, I got a relief that he knew more than the first salesperson that just read cards instead of telling me why one product is better than the other.
Search retargeting does all of these things. It enables the advertiser to tell his story away from his competitors using pictures and graphics. He can also tell his story more than once. This is a really good way to market.
For a search engine marketer like me, I’ve discovered several things that helped me to realize that this new approach to marketing will not only change the world of display but the entire world of search as well.
Before I forget to mention it, by the year 2016, studies have shown that half of all display ads are going to be bought using tactics like search retargeting. This is a really good reason to jump into search retargeting. Now is the perfect time to become a leader in the space, because, as we all know, it’s always “way better” to be the expert than the one buying the book he wrote.
The other thing you should consider is that with retargeting, you can actually market to the searchers who go to your competitor’s website…even if they have never been to yours or have never even heard of you! It’s kind of like putting a billboard up across the street from you toughest competitor. Does that sound a bit harsh?
Here’s what’s harsh. If you don’t do it now, your competitor’s are going to find out about this and they will be doing this to YOU!
Retargeting doesn’t fit every business model. For instance, if your business model is to only get new customers by word of mouth because you don’t like to spend money on advertising. Then this is not for you. It’s for your competitor down the street who gets it. If trading $1.00 for $5.00 or $10.00 or $1000.00 (depending on the average ticket size of your offering) does not compute. Retargeting is not for you. Again, it’s for the guy down the street who does and is on the phone now with what would have been your prospect.
If however, you ARE “the other guy,” if you like the idea of gaining market share in your field of business, then you need to learn all you can about retargeting ASAP.
One more thing, since I know you are wondering. What does retargeting cost?
Cost? If you look at trading a $1 bill for a $10 bill as costing you a dollar, you might be better off waiting it out for another year to see if your competitors think that’s too expensive. If you are already familiar with writing monthly checks to the yellow book ad people, then you will be astounded at your return for that kind of ad spend.
Call (512) 630-4343 to learn how retargeting can make a HUGE difference in your business.