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Wednesday / August 12.

The Latest Event Industry Insights

How to Use Retargeting to Promote Your Next Event

Here’s a grim reality: only about 2% of visitors who click on an ad on social media converts. That means the other 98% click away without buying a ticket or RSVPing. One may think then that paid Facebook and social media ads are a lost cause.

That is not the case, though, especially if you retarget that 98%. Retargeting is one of the most underutilized tools, and knowing how to use it just might result in more desirable conversion rates.

What Exactly Is Retargeting?

If you surf the Web, then for sure you have come across retargeted ads without even realizing it. Retargeted ads are those that you clicked on previously that later appear again on other sites. The fact that someone clicked on the ad initially meant they expressed some inkling of interest. Of course, they’re likely to forget about as they browse other sites. Retargeted ads serve to remind people and keep the company in the back of their minds.

With Facebook retargeted ads, users will see ads that they clicked on previously, with the ad appearing a second, third, or fourth time, and beyond.

What Are the Benefits?

The benefit is that you get to target a specific audience that you know is a strong demographic given that they expressed enough interest to click on your ad in the first place. This naturally leads to increased conversions.

One report, in fact, showed that retargeted ads increased site visits by 726% within four weeks. The same study also showed that 67% of advertisers are using Facebook’s FBX exchange for ad retargeting. Finally, the study indicated that 26% of retargeted visitors eventually converted.

On top of that, the pay-per-click rate for retargeted ads are often lower than regular ads. Also, retargeted ads don’t have to be the exact same ad the person previously clicked on. If someone originally clicked on an ad for product X, then a retargeted ad could be for a similar item in product Y.

When to Use Retargeting

You can designate specific times for the ds to appear. Many people simply run their campaign during work hours from 9-to-5. This may indeed work out for some companies. Nevertheless, you should test out different times. The hour before or after work are good times to test out. When you test out different time periods, you’ll eventually find that “sweet spot” that tends to see the most clicks and conversions.

How to Use Retargeting

While various platforms offer ad retargeting, you should give extra emphasis on Facebook. Why? Well, according to one study, spending on Facebook retargeting has increased by 51% for B2B companies, while the figure jumped by 31% for retail companies.

To make use of Facebook retargeting, join the network’s Custom Audience section. Visit Facebook’s official page for the full details on how to get started and the rules that apply. Once you have a Custom Audience page section set up, create ads using the “Ads Create Tool.” You can set it up to appear in the news feed section or on the right hand column of any device. Follow up by filtering your audience demographic and setting a budget.

Finally, install this Facebook code to your website. This allows the social network to keep track of those who visited your website or a certain page within the website.

Tips for Success

Here’re a few tips for maximum success. Ultimately, it’s all about trial and error and testing out different types of ads.

Incentives – retargeted ads can include incentives. If so, test out different offers. One ad might contain a buy-2-get-1-free special, while another may include a 30%-off-with-this-ad-only deal. Keep track of the data and eventually gravitate towards the incentive that’s yielding the best conversion.

Language – Test out different messages. Call-to-action are always useful, but you can test other message types as well, such as those that begin by asking a question and offering an answer in the next sentence.

Convey Urgency – Messages can also be of the urgent variety, such as “only X tickets remain.” This gets people to rethink about attending if they’re still on the fences.

Avoid Ad Exhaustion – you can designate the number of times the ad shows up for a user. You can have the ad continue to reappear indefinitely, but this is not a good strategy. People can become numb to your ad if you repeatedly show it to them. If a user has not converted after showing the same ad for the third or fourth time, then it’s unlikely they’ll eventually convert. Move on to fresher targets.

Basically, the same tips you would apply for regular paid ads apply for retargeting ads.

Make Retargeting a Regular Tool

If you use paid ads in any capacity and especially on social media, then it makes all the sense in the world to use retargeted ads. This will allow you to target that 98% of people that didn’t take action the first time around but just might do so if you send them little reminders.

Dan McCarthy is an Event Manager at Ultimate Experience, an event management company based in the UK. Dan has 5 years of event project management under his belt. He has worked on many successful events, and currently he shares his knowledge by writing on the company blog. Follow him on Twitter @DanCarthy2.

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