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The week before Thanksgiving, there are about as many articles on retail optimization tips as there are early Black Friday sales. Realistically though, brands should have been preparing for Black Friday, retail’s kick-off into its biggest earnings season of the year, since before this past summer. Budgets are set, campaigns in place, so with these limitations in mind what can you do to continue optimizing your marketing tactics during this busy season? Use display retargeting!

‘Tis the season to comparison shop, and repetition breeds familiarity

With all the audience targeting available to marketers, display ads can be used to introduce your products to researching shoppers with (ideally) captivating images and relevant copy. With retargeting, advertisers can keep their shoppers engaged with the brand, harnessing the powers of repetition. Increasing your brand visibility online increases the likelihood of your products making shoppers’ top picks lists, and ultimately pushes you closer to those holiday season conversions. So how can you implement this tactic on a tight timeline? That depends on whether or not you are already running display retargeting.

Is your Brand already Running Display Retargeting Campaigns?

You are already ahead of the game. Here are a few ways you can improve the ads you are already running to make sure you capture that Black Friday traffic.

  1. Stay Relevant: During Black Friday time, people are looking for Black Friday deals. In preparation, swap out any generic ad copy or creative you may already be running for super-specific Black Friday deals jargon, using the timeline of when consumers are shopping to dictate when these Black Friday-specific ads will appear. Throw in reminders like “incredible deal coming up next week!” into the mix, specifically telling customers where and when to return to your site for that amazing deal they just can’t refuse.
  2. Communicate Clearly: Right now, shoppers are hunting. Use your ad copy to be as clear and concise as you can to communicate the deals your brand is offering and where they can get them fast. Offer digestible and useful messaging to effectively help consumers track their holiday grabs.
  3. Use Retargeting More than Just Direct Site Conversions: Do you have deals only available in-store? Use retargeting to point your audience to where they need to be to get those deals whether that location is online or in-store. Maybe you’re running a sweepstakes on Facebook? Why not tell your potential shoppers about how they can sign up through paid social ads? Maybe they will even spread the word about it to their friends. Remember that Display Retargeting can live outside the 300×250 box.

Not Running Display Retargeting Already? Not to Worry!

It’s never the wrong time to start a display retargeting campaign. This holiday season is the perfect time for your brand to start observing its site traffic, shopper behavior, and building up its audience lists for 2015 retargeting campaigns. Set up both general and page specific remarketing lists, segmented by the various navigation or conversion paths that are available to the shoppers. With tracking in place, you’ll start collecting data about your segmented audience lists to use during communication with 2015 retargeting campaigns. You can also:

  • Note the upstream and downstream websites visited by your customer prior to landing on your brand website.
  • Figure out which other types of content customers engage with the most or least.
  • Run reports on your growing audience lists to see what 3rd party behavior segments they fall into (i.e. Custom Audience Models)

Why wait though? Why not just set up the pixels and retarget now?

While it is possible to quickly get tracking in place, design relevant creative, and launch a retargeting campaign for this upcoming Black Friday and Cyber Monday, you may not experience the same impact as the advertisers that have already been collecting and optimizing their audience lists.  Feel free to launch away, but manage expectation accordingly. You can use this week as a way to learn for future promotional campaigns. After all there are still December and January sales to look forward to!

Note: Choose a platform that can give you the ability to make the adjustments in real time, in bidding, budgeting, and targeting. These features give marketers the most control over their campaigns at any given time.

All in all, everyone is making their list and checking it twice. Make sure your products are visible on that list by taking advantage of display advertising in real time. There’s never been a better time to retarget prospective customers for conversions this shopping season and into 2015.

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