By Meghan Bardwell, marketing coordinator with Heinz Marketing

March Madness is all about choices for a basketball enthusiast. Which team has the best players? Which team has the highest winning record? Which team do you think will make it to the end? There are a lot of options. You won’t know who will be the winner until the end of the game, but with some research, you have a good of idea of your best options.

Let’s take the same idea and apply it to choosing a retargeting platform. There are a lot of options, too. If you’re new to the retargeting field, the options can be overwhelming. But with some research, and a clear definition of your goals, you can choose the best team to work for you. And maybe—just maybe—you’ll become a retargeting enthusiast in the end.

Four Types of Remarketing
Put simply, retargeting is highly targeted marketing. There are four major types:

1. Search: show ads to people who search a keyword or phrase relevant to your product/service
2. Site: show ads to users who visit your site
3. Email/CRM: target ads using email addresses and other behavioral information
4. Social: show customized ads to potential customers using social data from Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Smarter Marketing
Retargeting is smarter marketing. By identifying potential customers who have already shown an interest in your product or service, you’re (hopefully) getting a better ROI from your advertising budget.

Lower Budget Platforms
Google AdWords: Probably one of the most well-known options, Google AdWords offers search and site retargeting. This platform is a great option if you want to get your feet wet, have time and drive to learn the details of remarketing campaigns, or have a small budget to work with. Unlike the majority retargeting companies, Google doesn’t charge you an upfront fee; you set a daily budget and pay as people click on your ads.

Keep in mind that AdWords only reaches users on the Google network. If most of your site visitors come from Google’s search engine, then that’s great. If they don’t, you may want to consider another platform that reaches a larger portion of the internet.

ReTargeter: A small company based in San Francisco, ReTargeter offers site and dynamic (targeting site visitors by behavior, location, or demographics) retargeting. You can even retarget your audience on Facebook. You’ll set up the campaigns yourself and monitor the results; you’ll also have access to great customer service. Prices start at an affordable level, but can jump higher fairly quickly. The platform reaches multiple networks (including Google, Bing, Yahoo)—around 95 percent of the internet.

AdRoll: This company specializes in site retargeting, using both contextual and behavioral targeting to hone in on your best audience. AdRoll also has the ability to bring your retargeting ads to Facebook. Their platform is completely self-service with great reporting built in, allowing you to build and monitor the campaigns yourself. Prices are reasonable, with no minimum spend, and vary based on the size of audience you want to reach; more people equals a higher cost. The platform reaches a larger portion of the internet as well—around 95 percent.

Medium-High Budget Platforms
Simpli.fi: This platform offers search, site, and CRM retargeting. The pricing model is based on price per impressions and/or clicks, but you have to contact them to get a specific quote. Simpli.fi provides a self-service platform, with lots of metric and reporting options. Their site also offers step-by-step tutorials to help you set up your campaigns.

Chango: Based in Toronto, this company specializes in search retargeting. They are a full-service company, meaning Chango’s team does the bulk of the work for you. This option is great for a marketer with little time on their hands and a sizeable budget, but may be frustrating for a more hands-on marketer. There’s no platform to view real-time metrics, so you have to rely on the company to provide the reporting and results you want. Their powerful platform has a wide internet access of about 95 percent.

Fetchback: Specializing in site retargeting, this company is all about analyzing the heck out of metrics. They offer quite a few reporting options on their platform to help you optimize your marketing campaigns. Fetchback also creates highly customized and targeted ads for your campaign, using more than 1,000 analytic points to change the messaging and imagery based on audience, location, etc. Pricing isn’t listed on their website, so you have to contact them to get a quote.

This overview of retargeting companies is by no means exhaustive. Here are some other companies to check out as well: Magnetic, Responsys, Rocket Fuel, Media Forge, A Perfect Audience, and Criteo.

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