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Understanding Google Audience Solutions & Remarketing

16th February 2017

In case you’re unaware, Google Partners are currently running a series of webinars allowing you to train as an Audience Product Expert. In their own words, the hour-long webinars, held every Tuesday will help you:

  • Learn how to use your data and Google’s data to reach the right customer at the right time
  • Gain a comprehensive and strategic approach to Audience solutions, to provide your customers with tailored ads and a better user experience
  • Reach higher conversion rates bringing your Audience knowledge to the next level

It’s primarily for those who use AdWords and the Google Display Network, but there’s plenty of interesting stuff in there for pretty much anyone working in digital marketing.

The latest webinar was entitledĀ Understanding Audience Solutions and Remarketing, covering topics such as audience buying signals, patterns of behaviour, personalised algorithms, and more. Here’s a bit of a summary of what was talked about…

  • Audience signals are “footprints” left by internet users, and can tell us about the user and their interests, such as where they live, how old they are, and what their passions are. This data is collected by your Google Analytics account, but Google’s machine learning also collects audience signals to power automated targeting and bidding options in AdWords.

Google audience signals

  • Google holds a heck of a lot of data. If you’re using ‘in market’ or ‘interest’ audiences, Google compiles these audiences based on a multitude of data signals.

Google audiences training

  • Google’s machine learning looks forĀ repeated patterns of behaviour, not one-off occurrences. This means the data is much more likely to be reliable so you can target the right people.

repeated patterns of buying behaviour

  • ‘Interest’ audiences have shown repeated visits to sources of information about a particular subject. ‘In market’ audiences have shown repeated patterns of behaviour specific to acquisition intent (such as multiple visits to a Ferrari dealership website, as opposed to simply looking at pictures of Ferraris).

interest vs intent shopping behaviour

  • Personalised algorithms are produced based on everyone’s browsing habits. ‘Interest’ audiences look at specific user behaviour. In the below slide, twin ‘A’ is categorised as a fashion enthusiast. He spends the same amount of time browsing fashion websites as twin ‘B’, but does so as a higher percentage of his overall daily browsing time.

personalised algorithms google

  • Google’s own audience lists are updated with every impression, so you have accurate and up-to-date data at all times. They’re free to use – you just pay for the media.

Google audience lists

  • To find data on your audience, find the ‘audiences’ section in the left-hand navigation in AdWords, as shown below…

Audiences in adwords

  • The insights in here are really useful and can help inform your targeting and messaging tactics. You can see below an example of the kind of data you can get access to…

Google audiences data in adwords

  • Here are some pretty illuminating conversion stats, showing how important remarketing can be in getting that all-important purchase…

conversion rates of websites

Conversion rates shopping cart abandonment

website conversion rates cross device

  • Here’s how remarketing works in a nutshell, from a person leaving a cookie on a site to actually making a purchase. Cookies enable website visitors to be organised into lists of common behaviour so they can be retargeted with search and display ads.

how remarketing works

  • The more you know about a visitor, the better you can tailor your marketing approach to them. Once you’ve found audiences that work for you, use the Similar Audiences targeting option to scale and find new customers like the ones you’ve already reached.

remarketing tips

  • Here’s a handy checklist for getting going with remarketing…

remarketing checklist

  • And some best practices for remarketing…

Remarketing best practice

  • In the webinar they talked about the ‘Onion Strategy’. Try remarketing audiences based on time since last session. The layered approach often sees visitors with the most recent sessions converting at a higher rate. However, the behaviour can differ depending on the product.

remarketing tips

  • Remarketing works across different devices, even though cookies aren’t cross-device.

remarketing cross device

  • Cross-device remarketing is based on behaviour from logged in users.

cross device remarketing

  • Google Analytics remarketing lists are easy to set up and use.

GA remarketing lists

  • Set up a list or segment in GA. If the account is linked to AdWords, you will be able to import the list.

remarketing in google analytics

  • There is a library of ready-made GA segments that you can import into your account to use as remarketing lists – search for Google Analytics Solutions Gallery to find out more about this.

Google analytics solutions gallery

  • GA Smart Lists are powered by machine learning, and automatically compile lists of users who seem most likely to convert.

GA smart lists

  • Expand your reach to new users by using the Similar Audiences targeting option. These people exhibit similar behaviour to the people already in your remarketing lists. However, they have not previously been to your website.

Similar audiences targeting

  • Using Similar Audiences can help you to keep topping up your remarketing lists with new visitors.

Similar audiences remarketing

In summary:

  • Machine learning compiles audiences based on massive volumes of behaviour data
  • Insights reports can tell you about those audiences
  • Remarketing helps to give you a second chance at converting interested visitors
  • Similar Audiences helps you to find new customers based on lists of your existing customers

rmarketing tips

Want to reach more customers? Our paid search team can help get your products in front of the people that matter.