A Remarketing Love Story with A Happily Ever After


As an online shopper, I often find myself being targeted or retargeted by consumer brand remarketing campaigns, and before I know it, the digital marketer nerd inside me creeps up and I fight the urge to stand up and just give them a round of applause. That, or it works, and I end up buying #AllTheThings.

I can’t tell you how many times I overhear people talking about “creepy” advertising that is “stalking them.” And I want to do an assortment of things:

  1. Laugh
  2. Cry
  3. Evil laugh
  4. Give them a marketing lesson

If you are one of those people thinking how is it not creepy? I’m so glad you’re here, keep reading!

How are they doing this?

I’d like to introduce you to geotargeting and remarketing.

Geotargeting – Geotargeting is when you set an ad to display to people only in a certain geographical area. Yep, that person has to be physically within the “geofence” that you create. You could target a country, state, city, zip code or even a mile radius around an address. So no, your phone isn’t listening to you talk about how you’re hungry then magically you start getting restaurant ads. You are simply fall within their geofence and match their targeting criteria, thus you are getting served their ad.


Remarketing – Remarketing is when you set an ad to display only to people who have visited your website at least once before. So, someone visits your website, they don’t buy your product just yet (still browsing) and they leave your website. Now, they’re magically getting served your ad when they visit other websites. So ideally they will end up clicking on your ad, going back to your website, and now making that purchase. Sorry folks, it’s not magic. Or stalking. Well, kind of. They came to your website and left, so they match your targeting criteria, and are getting served their ad.


So, if you’re still a little confused on how all this works, let me show you with my real-life example.

The Remarketing Love Story

I have been talking for a long time about updating my master bathroom, so naturally, I have been browsing online to see my options and the costs associated with the update.

Exhibit A: Me browsing the shower doors at Home Depot. This one seems nice, I kinda dig it.


But, I haven’t decided on it yet, I’m just browsing, doing some research. So, I leave the Home Depot website, and naturally, I go to check what’s new on Facebook.

Exhibit B: Well, well, well. What do we have here? Shower doors from Home Depot right in my Facebook feed! The exact one I was looking at plus similar ones, so maybe if I didn’t like that one, here are some other options I may like! Note the “Shop Now” call to action button in the ad.


But alas, there are many fish (shower doors) in the sea. I’m still playing the field. So, days later….

Exhibit C: Shower door we meet again! Now, it’s been days since I have been browsing and by now, it’s time for me to make a purchase. So, I click on that handy, dandy “Shop Now” button.


That takes me right to the product page on their website. Shower door, things are getting more serious.


The Happily Ever After

And finally, Exhibit D: They win. I win. We all win. It’s love. It’s happily ever after.


So, their retargeting campaign worked on me! They knew I was not ready to buy yet so they strategically kept reminding me of their product so when I was ready, I would come back and buy. That’s lead nurturing at its finest! I was aware of the strategy they were using so I didn’t take it as creepy. In the end it was really just helpful. A successful strategy targets the right person, with the right message, at the right place, at the right time. Who wouldn’t prefer highly targeted, relevant ads over random, irrelevant ads? Maybe someday those people who think its “creepy” will come around and appreciate what us marketers are doing to make their life better! #YouAreWelcome

The smart folks over at Critero did some research and it turns out Retargeted users are 70% more likely to convert than their non-retargeted counterparts.

I’m not surprised by that at all with people’s short attention span these days. Maybe they were fully intent on buying then got pulled away and forgot to go back and finish. Or like me, they just weren’t ready to buy yet, but the brand stayed relevant during my consideration period and then came out successful when I was ready to buy.

There are many different strategies to employ when utilizing geotargeting or remarketing, and which one to select depends on your goals. If you would like to hear how we could utilize geotargeting or remarketing for your business, reach out. We would love to chat.

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