Oneupweb : Google Adwords Remarketing Feature on the Content Network

There’s a new kid on the block in the Google neighborhood. This new feature is called remarketing and it’s under the “Audiences” tab in AdWords. Remarketing provides a fairly simple way to connect with users, based on their past interactions with your website. A piece of JavaScript code is added to the pages you want to promote on your site. And then the magic happens, or whatever you want to call it.

After driving traffic to the site with search ads, you can then show the unsuspecting consumers tailored ads throughout the Content Network. These ads follow them throughout the buying cycle, creating a conversion funnel at all stages.

Can you say virtual restraining order? Essentially, it provides an opportunity to bring a bounced user back, resulting in a conversion. Or freak them out so much that they’ll never visit your site again and likely wield their can of digital mace at the mention of your name. Users are practically stalked by your ads throughout their journey in the vast, mysterious and endless land of the content network.

I get it, remarketing narrows your audience and targets the people that have already showed interest. The only beef I have with this feature is the undeniable creepiness and persistence of it. It will become increasingly more annoying the 30th time you see the same ad if you genuinely aren’t interested. Of course, Google is hyping it as the next coming, the end all be all, the light at the end of the tunnel (insert your favorite dramatic cliché here).

 

Let me put this into non-Google perspective for you. There you are, moseying along doing some window shopping, minding your own business. All of a sudden the ShamWow guy pops out of the bushes and tries to sell you the same candy that’s in the window of the store right in front of you. And Vince “You’ll Say Wow Every Time” Shlomi proceeds to do this at every store you stop at for the next five miles, or until you decide you can’t take it anymore. The Google remarketing tool is that ambitious.

The good news is, with Google remarketing you can hit the mute button on the loud, eccentric antics—or at least get him to stop following you from store-to-store. This is done by opting-out of remarketing by using the Ads Preferences Manager in Adwords. Whew! That provides both a clear conscience and peace of mind. Not to mention a little sensory relief.

However, I can’t deny the obvious potential of this thing. It lies in the ability to increase brand awareness, customer loyalty and latent sales. Remarketing makes it possible for businesses to reach users who are likely to be more receptive to their ads and special offers. Disregard its inherent encroachment and violation of any and all boundaries of basic human privacy. It provides an opportunity to deliver highly relevant and customized content to users who have declared interest in a product or service.

Thus far, Google testing has shown higher conversion rates, ROI and total sales from advertisers utilizing this feature. And, ultimately, it is getting positive feedback.

The most obvious advantage is that it streamlines what can be an otherwise long-winded process. The big picture is that it aggregates data faster, and the quicker you can get your message in front of the right audience, the better off you will be in the long run.

One disadvantage (besides the warm and fuzzy stalker quality) is increased click cost. It will have a negative effect if those high priced clicks don’t convert. Another disadvantage is tracking—Google has positioned itself masterfully in this case (surprise, surprise). Most tracking systems outside of Google Analytics won’t be able to identify the effect the remarketing tool will have. This is because they can only pick up on the initial unique visit to the site and the rest will be lost in translation.

So what do you think about Google remarketing? Good, or bad?

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