There is a common misconception that retargeting is purely an ecommerce solution. This confusion may, in part, stem from the fact that the most common explanation for how retargeting works is the “Zappos example: You visit Zappos, look at a pair of shoes, and after abandoning your purchase you begin to see shoe ads all over the web. (We too are often guilty of propagating this myth, as this example is the simplest and often most effective way to describe the technology.)
Nevertheless, retargeting can often provide significant benefits for B2B companies and in some cases even performs better than for retailers.
Though it is obvious how retailers can benefit from retargeting, it is not always apparent how the technology can work for B2B. Any B2B company that uses a free trial, has a freemium product, engages in active lead generation, or runs lead nurturing campaigns can use retargeting to increase conversions and drive revenue.
The benefits of offering a free trial are obvious: eliminating risk and increasing sign-ups out of the gate. The risk lies with users who sign up for free but ultimately fail to convert. Depending on how your trial is structured, users may need to take additional action to enroll with your paid service. Retargeting users who have signed up for a free trial will remind them to take the additional steps.
Email marketing is a common solution for outreach to on-the-cusp free users, yet you can only send so many emails; at a certain point you begin to alienate recipients. Retargeting provides an additional touch point that, particularly when coupled with email, can help convince users to convert.
For the most part, users don’t want to see ads for a product they’ve already purchased. One of the biggest mistakes we see in retargeting is ads asking users to take an action they’ve already taken.
However, that doesn’t mean you can’t advertise to existing clients, you simply must do so in a way that adds value. One prime example is freemium products. Extolling the virtues of your paid product to your free users (via retargeting) can help increase upsells.
Even if your product does not include a free trial or operate on a freemium model, retargeting can be a smart addition to your marketing mix.
In the B2B space, the sales process is typically longer than for consumer goods. Potential buyers must do their due diligence and are likely to thoroughly research all their available options. Retargeting will keep your company in front of potential customers while they evaluate the competition, helping improve brand awareness, and ultimately driving more leads. If you’re devoting any marketing resources to bring traffic to a landing page or lead gen form, retargeting people who bounce from those pages will help you stay in touch with your qualified traffic during the entire sales cycle.
If you’re using any sort of email campaign to keep active leads engaged (and you should be!), retargeting is a phenomenal addition. With email drip campaigns, it is very simple to create an email retargeting campaign to accompany it. All you need to do is add a retargeting code into the HTML or signature of your emails, and everyone who opens an email will begin to see your ads all over the web. The benefit here is that you can further segment your emails based on how far your users are in the funnel. That way, you can ensure you’re getting the most relevant message in front of your leads.
While you may have thought retargeting was only for ecommerce, there are a number of ways this technology can be used to help B2B companies drive leads, and increase conversions and revenue.