Have you ever heard the term re-marketing or re-targeting and wondered what on earth it means? Today I will attempt to explain it using a practical example.
Before I start though, I first need to explain the difference between third party display banners and display networks. Third party banners, are banners that are placed on a specific website with a specific location for a specific period of time. Display networks are made up of 100's and 1000's of websites (all different in terms of content and target audiences). Here is a quick video explaining what the Google Display Network is.
Put simply, re-targeting or re-marketing allows brands to continue marketing highly relevant content to users once they have left their website. It's quite a simple concept, when you visit a website the device that you are using has a unique identity, the website then places what is called a "cookie" on your machine and this allows the website to track what you are doing. Here is a short clip introducing the Google re-marketing tag that allows Google to monitor your online activity.
As a practical example I have chosen Zando's because in my opinion they are currently very effectively using re-marketing strategies in their digital media strategies. When you visit the Zando website you will notice that as you start browsing through different products you will start to see the products you viewed first appear on the right hand side of the product that you are currently looking at. This is because when you landed on the website they started tracking and monitoring all the products that you looked at and they will continue to show you these products to try and entice you to purchase them because they know that you showed an interest into these products.
Re-marketing allows Zando's to apply this same methodology in their digital media strategies, this means that once you leave their website they know what products you showed an interest in, which products you possibly showed more interest in but did not make a purchase (convert). Now as you browse the web in the weeks that follow, you will most likely be browsing within a display network where Zando's has a display media strategy running, this media (banners) will now show you the exact products that you looked at, it will usually also include the discount and have some level of interactivity that allows you to scroll between the different products within the banner.
Zando's is able to set a cap on how many times you see the banner and if you don't convert on that specific banner they then have the capability to change the creative to try and entice you even further with a new design. On many of the websites within the display networks you will find tandem banners whereby the top banner and the side banner will be Zando's branded making sure you don't miss them.
So the next time you browse the Zando's website, have a look and see if you start noticing some Zando display banners following you around the world wide web :)
It may seem like a very invasive way of advertising but it allows brands and marketers to create very targeted campaigns and ensure that the content you see is extremely relevant.