08 Jul 2014

Facebook Enhanced Audience Retargeting Makes PR More Valuable

From the perspective of PR practitioners, public relations work is much like a wave washing ashore. All of the energy associated with a successful campaign crashes on the beaches of the client. For a short time, it’s exciting. For a short time, it’s invigorating. But like the ocean, the attention of the crowd moves on and just as quickly, the wave retreats out to sea and is gone. If only there were a way to revive that attention again and again, if only there were a way to remind people to come back.

Late last week, Facebook announced a series of new retargeting features that can help to solve the ephemeral nature of our audience’s attention. Let’s briefly look at a few of these new options:

Obviously, being able to show ads to anyone who has visited your website has broad value; for now, we’ll move past that into the other three options.

People who visit specific pages: many public relations campaigns should have some owned media destination at the end of the campaign for audience members to visit, a meaningful digital endpoint to their journey. These can be landing pages intended for providing information, lead generation pages, and even hard-sell “squeeze” pages designed to elicit immediate sales. Whatever the page may be, only a certain portion of the audience that your PR campaign created will convert on the spot. Bring only those visitors who abandoned back to the page to get them to complete the intended goal.

People who visit specific pages but not others: This feature is specific to things like shopping cart abandonment, and anything functionally the same as shopping cart abandonment. Let’s say you’ve got an intense PR campaign running about what a great place to work your company is. Let’s say your job application process is a 3 step process. This feature would let you remarket to those people who got through step 1 of your job application but not steps 2 or 3.

People who haven’t visited your website in a certain amount of time: This feature is by far the most powerful for reviving dormant audiences, especially if you carefully track the various PR campaigns you’re doing by time. Let’s say you got a great hit in the New York Times a month ago:

Audience_Overview_-_Google_Analytics

The audience has indeed largely moved on since then, but with this feature, you could target those individuals who visited during that brief, glorious period when everyone was reading about you and remind them that you’re still doing great things.

Retargeting and remarketing to your audiences is one of the cornerstones of great PR ROI. These new features let you reap additional value from audiences that you’ve attracted through earned media and can help keep them coming back over and over again. Be sure to add them to your PR and marketing toolbox!

Christopher S. Penn
Vice President, Marketing Technology

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