Get with the Program(matic): mobile and cross-device retargeting

In my last column, we looked at the importance of segmenting your audience and serving the right ad to the right person. This week I want to discuss the importance of including mobile in your retargeting strategy and some tips get make sure you’re leading the pack.

Why retarget on mobile?

The reality is your customers have already moved to mobile. According to the ‘Our Mobile Planet – New Zealand’ report, 46 percent of New Zealanders access the internet from a smartphone everyday and, according to the same report, 66 percent of New Zealanders have researched a product or service on their smartphone.

What this means for marketers is the mobile (and tablet) screen should definitely be part of, if not central to, your digital marketing strategy. Customers don’t differentiate between screens, they go for the most convenient screen for that moment so brands need to make sure they’re delivering a consistent message across all their media. 

How to retarget on mobile

There are three different ways to retarget on mobile:

1. Cross-device retargeting

Even if you don’t have a mobile-optimised site yet, you can still make sure that you stay front of mind with your customers as they’re browsing on their mobile or tablet. With this type of retargeting, AdRoll is able to leverage your potential customer’s relationship with their social media channels to show them relevant ads.

2. Mobile Browser Retargeting

If you do have a mobile-optimised site, mobile retargeting works exactly like desktop retargeting. When a customer visits your mobile site from their smartphone or tablet you can serve targeted ads on the same device while they move around the mobile web. If your mobile-optimised site is attracting a lot of traffic, retargeting to those customers can be a great way to drive revenue.

3. Mobile App Installs

If you have an app, you can also drive installs. Using cross-device retargeting techniques, you can serve ads to people who have visited either your desktop or mobile website with ads to download your app in their Facebook News Feed. Users can also share, like or comment on your app to encourage more downloads.

Top tips for mobile retargeting campaigns

Here are my top five tips to ensure you’re delivering fantastic mobile content time and again:

1. Stay Informed

Make sure that you’re staying up to date on the latest industry developments in mobile by joining the IAB New Zealand and the Marketing Association. Both organisations offer fantastic opportunities to learn more about the mobile and digital space. You should also subscribe to trade magazines (like the one you’re reading now) to keep on top of new product announcements by vendors in the region.

2. Create a mobile-optimised site

Sounds obvious, right? But we’ve all had the customer experience where a site hasn’t been optimised towards mobile and the experience has been, well, dreadful.

But surprisingly 45 percent of businesses don’t have a mobile optimised site according to Econsultancy.com. Furthermore, earlier this year, Google announced ‘mobile friendliness’ will now be factored into its search algorithm—in effect, penalising brands who don’t have a mobile-optimised website.

When building out a mobile-optimised site, think about how your customers are using your mobile site. Your mobile site should reflect what your customers need. It should be fast to load and easily navigated with fingers (no small drop down menus). The content should be clean and easy read and transactions should take place as simply as possible.

3. Be social

Facebook is clearly popular in New Zealand. According to ComScore, Facebook has 1.95 million unique Kiwis visitors in 2013 – that’s double the number of unique visitors to LinkedIn who came in second.

In our 2014 Whitepaper Facebook by the Numbers, we looked at the impact of adding mobile formats to campaigns currently running on Facebook. The report showed that advertisers who add mobile formats into an existing Facebook campaign saw on average 29 percent more clicks and 15 percent more conversions.

4. Use mobile-specific ad units

Ad formats are now being designed for the mobile screen. The 320 x 50 pixels ad size as well as the Facebook News Feed 360 x 315 pixel size. It creates a better user experience on the screen and encourages higher adoption. We’ve found that customers who adopt mobile-specific sizes see on average a two times increase in mobile web engagement and conversions.

Publishers are also starting to open up more inventory in mobile-specific sizes and therefore, are looking to sell more mobile-specific advertising.

5. Be dynamic

According to an Infolinks survey in the US, 86 percent of consumers suffer from banner blindness and were unable to recall the last display ad they saw online. But internal AdRoll data shows that using dynamic ads (specific, personalised ads), on average, increases CTR by 115 percent and creates a 44 percent lift in ROI when compared to non-personalised ads. That’s a huge percentage! This data shows that relevancy will improve your response rates and highlights how important it is to get segmentation right.

If you want to learn more about mobile, you can listen to our Mobile Commandments webinar on-demand here.

Next week, we’ll explore retargeting on social channels and talk you through some of the interesting results from our Facebook by the Numbers report. 

  • Ben Sharp is the managing director of AdRoll in Australia and New Zealand.  

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