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comScore Study Says Ad Retargeting Generates Strongest Lift




comScore just released  a new study they conducted with ValueClick Media on the effectiveness of online display advertising according to its media placement strategy. They analyzed 103 campaigns from 39 different advertisers covering 7 industries, examining the lift in brand website visitation and trademark search queries across six different media placement strategies.

Here’s a simplified look at what they found.

Retargeting – Served to users that have previously visited an advertiser’s site.

ReTargeted ads had the highest lift in trademark search behavior with a whopping 1,046 percent. The downside is that retargeting by the very nature of the beast, doesn’t reach as many potential customers so it’s perfect for those who have a high volume of abandoned shopping carts.

Premium Pricing – High visibility placements on premium publishers.

The downside here is the cost, but research showed a higher than average lift for this type of ad.

Contextual Targeting – Ads served to related page-level content

Also an expensive option, but the upside is that contextual advertising had a much larger reach than other types, surpassed only by. . .

Run-of-Network (RON) – Ads which appear anywhere in the network, often optimized by conversion

Efficiency Pricing – Cost-per-click engagement with creative

Both of these were looked at as low cost alternatives that have the best reach but don’t have the lift of targeted ads.

So retargeting it is! Except for one thing. Anne Hunter, comScore vice president of Advertising Effectiveness said in a recent press release:

“One of the key findings of this research is just how effective Retargeting is at generating lift. However, if marketers want to continue to enjoy the benefits of this highly effective strategy, they must also deploy it responsibly and in a manner with which consumers are comfortable.”

This is a topic we’ve discussed before and I don’t know if I’m just noticing them more often or if more advertisers are using them,  but I still find it a little freaky, particularly when the ad doesn’t jive with the page I’m reading. For example, yesterday I was reading a serious interview with a breast cancer survivor and the ad that popped up was for a toy store I’d recently visited. Cute, animated mascot and breast cancer just don’t mix. I noticed the ad, but not in a good way.

comScore also found good results among advertisers that used a mix of three or more placement strategies at the same time. In one campaign that used five different methods, the average number of minutes on the brand’s site rose to seven times the norm.

Have you tried retargeting? We’d be interested in hearing your thoughts and results.