Converting leads into paying customers with retargeting

May 21, 2018 Elliott Moore

Today we feature a guest post from Ty Magnin, the director of marketing at Appcues. Appcues is a customer engagement software that helps marketers and product people improve their user onboarding, code-free.

Improving your retargeting campaigns

Coming up short on conversion efforts can hurt a company’s bottom line. It’s important to convert new users into paying customers, but driving new conversions takes more than just good user onboarding. It takes parallel efforts across email, sales calls, webinars, whitepapers, technical support, and more.

Retargeting campaigns are an easy and effective way to drive new sales and increase your return on investment (ROI). Keep reading for tips on how to improve your retargeting campaigns for marketing success, as well as real-world examples of businesses that have made these strategies work for them.

Educate new users with product-focused content

Product-focused content like case studies, ROI calculators, and product overviews can help bring people who are interested in your product a little closer to buying—or even drive them to convert.

Real-world example: AdStage

Encouraging users to take action can require multiple touches, and sometimes emails aren’t opened. According to marketer Hannah Lennett of AdStage, a pay-per-click (PPC) reporting platform, users “are often hesitant to start using our Automate product because they are not familiar with PPC automation.” AdStage uses retargeting to show new users a blog post that educates them on how PPC automation works.

Targeting tips for content-driven ads

When you advertise educational content, you’re asking people to do some work. Content-driven ads may be most effective when aimed at new users who are excited to try your product. That being said, you don’t want to get in the way of new users who don’t need additional education. Find a way to eliminate this group when you target your ads.

Create urgency with discounts

Retargeting ads are a great way to offer discounts, which create urgency in a sale. Discounts usually include expiration dates, or are found on one page and gone on the next, so they motivate customers to act quickly.

Real-world example: Udacity

Udacity, a platform for online courses, offers periodic discounts to generate new course signups. Their ads are straightforward, featuring strong CTAs like “Get 20% off any Nanodegree Program, now through Sunday!” The clear and fast-approaching expiration date makes users feel the urgency to buy.

Targeting tips for discount-driven ads

Segment your audience by targeting ads toward users who have started to engage less frequently—discounts can help bring them back. They can also entice new users to buy. But don’t over-advertise your discounts; if you offer them too soon or too often, you’ll lose revenue from customers who would have paid full price. They can also cheapen the perceived value of your product, so avoid offering them to users who signed up and never did anything.

Promote product-demo webinars

Webinars are an effective way to demonstrate your product. They are one-to-many and visually engaging, and—unlike sales demos—they let viewers stay somewhat anonymous. If your marketing team is focused on providing air cover for sales, or running a self-service business model, advertising a webinar with retargeting ads can help convert new users.

Real-world example: TrackMaven

TrackMaven, a marketing analytics software, offers webinars that address particular pain points that their product solves. Rather than selling the product directly, their retargeting ads feature upcoming webinar details and focus on bringing value to new users. This helps prospects who are kicking the TrackMaven tires to become seriously interested.

Targeting tips for demo-driven ads

Demo ads are a lot like content ads. You should consider offering them up front, when users are still motivated but not yet convinced to buy. But you may not want to advertise demos to users who are doing everything right on their own. If they don’t need the information, it could slow them down and become a waste of your money.

Make a last-ditch effort

When you’ve exceeded your average free-to-paid period, or after a free trial is over, it may still be worth reaching out.

Real-world example: Rival IQ

Rival IQ, a tool for competitive analysis, uses retargeting ads to make it easy for new users to continue working with the product after the free trial has expired. On top of the offer to extend the trial, Rival IQ offers a discount on their pay-as-you-go plan. This bonus offer may well be the push new users need to re-engage.

Targeting tips for last-ditch ads

Find the users who didn’t buy but behave like—and share demographics with—those who did. You can keep your spend down by targeting last-ditch ads to these users only.

Measuring campaign effectiveness

Clearly measuring the path a user takes from your ad to its conversion action will show you how engaging the ad is. Further, you can compare users who complete the action to users who don’t to measure how the completion of that action affects conversions.

A/B testing your bank of ads may be the best way to measure campaign effectiveness. When you A/B test, half your users see one set of ads and the other half see something different. You can then compare your conversion rates between the two groups to better understand the value of your retargeting campaigns and the effectiveness of your spend.

To learn more, check out Retargeting 101, AdRoll’s comprehensive guide to retargeting best practices.

About the Author

Elliott Moore

Elliott Moore, North America Marketing Manager, AdRoll

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