Have you been using online advertising to generate leads? Do you know what retargeting marketing is and what pixels can do for your small business conversions? Do you know how to double your leads by combining traditional display ads with pixel campaigns?
If not, then you’re not alone. A lot of small businesses don’t know what pixels are let alone what they mean for your online marketing success. By setting up pixels on your website you can continue to advertise to your customers even after they leave your site.
This week, we target social media coach and retargeting marketing master, Nick Unsworth, to chat about pixels and the importance of zooming in on focused, relevant ads that follow your prospective customers across the internet so they don’t forget your product or services.
So bring us up to speed. How did you become “Life on Fire?”
- Basically my whole life I’ve been an entrepreneur and I’ve always just been about living the dream and yet I had so many darn challenges along the way – a real brutal and tough journey as an entrepreneur.
- I was always chasing and chasing opportunities in real estate until the market crashed. I did network marketing in college and long story short, I ended up with this dream and vision to sell a business by 30.
- I tattooed that goal on my own chest on a cross and so I obsessed about it. That was my mission and I sacrificed a lot of my twenties to make happen and sell my business by 30.
- What ended up happening was it wasn’t what I expected. I got stuck on as the CEO of a 2-year earn out and it the business was no longer mine. I had corporate partners and everything changed and what I realized is that I wasn’t happy. It wasn’t the money that makes anyone happy.
- It was at that moment where I walked away from the rest of the equity I had left and walked away from a ton of money. I said, “all I care about is that I want to do what I love every single day. I want to live MY life on fire,” and that’s exactly what I did.
- Once I walked away I had that “a-ha” moment, hired a business coach, and just figured I’d build a business I love and enjoy every single day.
- That’s how Life on Fire was born and it’s our mission to help you and help other people love what they do for work and usually the money follows. Everything else follows.
- That’s in part how we do digital marketing. You gotta love what you do but you’ve got to be able to get customers too.
Can you define retargeting for us and maybe give us an example?
- One of the best ways to think about it is just picture that you’ve gone to the Macy’s website or Zappos or a big box brand and you look for clothes or you’re shopping for anything. You could be at Home Depot.
- On Home Depot’s website I was looking for this palm tree looking plant and I clicked on it. I didn’t buy, but I clicked all the way through and just wanted to see if the darn thing was available at my local Home Depot.
- Ever since then, I have this plant that follows me around on the internet – it’s starting to become a little bit annoying – but the plant shows up on Facebook on my feed. The plant shows up in my newsfeed on Facebook. The plant shows up on random sites all throughout the internet.
- What ends up happening is that retargeting or remarketing means that if you land on a site you get “pixeled.” A pixel is the same thing as a cookie.
- If you go to a website and in your browser you get pixeled or cookied and that leaves a footprint and that means if you land on a site the advertiser knows that and they can then serve you ads in other places indefinitely.
- What ends up happening is that if you were to take your website and you were to put a retargeting pixel on the home page of your site so anyone that touches that home page with their browser – even if they just head there for a second – instantly that pixel fires and they get “cookied” if you will, and then you now know that and that’s a virtual asset.
- Then, you can use a platform like AdRoll.com or Retargeter.com and then you can literally choose to serve that pixeled user display ads throughout all of the internet. You’re talking everywhere. Imagine if they’re on msn.com, your ad might pop up or on Pandora – your ad might pop up. They’re on Facebook – your ad pops up. They’re on Yahoo – your ad pops up.
- What’s crazy is that you can serve someone ads all throughout the internet because there’s literally hundreds and hundreds of millions of websites that have space that’s on their ads that’s used for Google and Yahoo and Bing and these big advertising networks.
- So, what’s cool is that just by simply putting this tracking pixel on your website you can essentially pixel the people that come to it. Then you can simply choose to turn it on and serve them ads wherever they may be.
- These ads are following them around and the whole purpose of all of this is that it’s a newer form of online marketing. It’s all about frequency and being “seen” everywhere.
- There’s a brand impact. When I advertise on Facebook people perceive that you’re an expert. Whether you’re a local business – you could be a local realtor or you could be a guy like me as a business coach and I might teach on Facebook advertising – and in that market when you’re advertising on Facebook people start to think, “wow, this guy’s an expert.”
- When you start to throw in retargeting, in addition to just advertising on Facebook, they’re seeing my face, your face on Yahoo too, on nbc.com, and all these other big, huge corporate sites. They start to think, “wow, this person has authority.” Plus, you’re just in front of them over and over which tends to increase conversions.
- This is all about being seen everywhere and building your brand positioning and most importantly, this is what’s responsible to help people get back to your site to purchase whatever it is that you have to offer through just being all around them.
- It’s such a great way to build that brand positioning and most importantly build up the conversions. There’s a lot of different types of examples but one that I think is really timely is – you know for a guy like me or like you, Rich, someone that uses live webinars to sell products and services or coaching – that it’s so interesting because people are always looking for where you optimize that process.
- So, a live webinar might use Facebook advertising to drive and get leads to come into an opt-in page. They’re opting to get a live webinar, you then teach some really good free information and then you sell at the end. Well, in that entire process you can optimize your ads or you can optimize the landing page where they’re landing and the copy on there.
- Just imagine if instead of 20% that the people that register show up live, what if 50% of people that register show up live because they’re being reminded through these retargeting ads all throughout the internet.
- You can increase the amount of people coming into the offer, but with the example of the webinar, that’s an example of one that’s really impactful because if you can double the percentage of people that show up live in a webinar, you’re literally doubling your sales.
- So that’s one particular area I’m seeing the most success with retargeting.
How can a small business with a limited budget get started with retargeting? Where do we start?
- Yeah, so there are two options.
- I would say that if you’re pretty savvy with running your own ads and you’re decent with putting your own copy out there and things like that I would recommend using AdRoll.com.
- The great thing about AdRoll is that there’s no minimum budget. It’s very cost effective. They use a CPM model which means you’re paying per 1,000 impressions that your display ad will get. You might be paying anywhere from $.50 to $1.50.
- So, you have to have a lot of people pixeled to have a substantial amount of money. The good thing is that this is actually pretty affordable. If you’re a small business, you might have a retargeting budget of $50/month which is really cool.
- If you’re a small business in a local market like a realtor, insurance agent, or chiropractor, even if you own a restaurant, people in your town, no joke, go to your next chamber of commerce meeting or B & I meeting – people are like, “oh my god, Nick. I see you everywhere!”
- When I was in real estate and if I did this you would blow up in your town because you literally are just all over the place.
- If you are someone that doesn’t have a big email list or you don’t get thousands and thousands of visitors to your site per day then AdRoll is great because there is no minimum budget. You can spend $50 a month and they simply give you that code and that pixel is nothing more than just a set of code that you put on your blog or website and they’ll tell you exactly where to attach it.
- You can put it in your footer of your website. It’s invisible – no one knows it’s there. What happens is that you literally just put it on the pages that you want to retarget to people. If you want to get more advanced and you want a picture – yeah, you want to retarget people that end up on your home page – you might want to serve them ads to get them back to your home page or to your offer.
- However, just imagine that someone that lands on your checkout page for a product or service – I would serve them different ads about that individual product or service. Just imagine, so Home Depot didn’t send me back to Home Depot. Home Depot sent me back to the exact same palm tree thing that I was looking at because they were smart enough to know that’s where I was and that’s what they’re going to show me until I buy it. Once I buy it they’re system is smart enough to know to turn that thing off. That’s why that plant keeps following me because I haven’t bought it yet.
- AdRoll is great because it’s very easy to set up. You do have to create your ads and there’s about a dozen different shapes and sizes because, just figure, your ads are going to be displayed on a wide range of websites. You don’t really have the choice as to which ones they’re going to go on. It could be on the Google content network, you’ve got the Yahoo content network, or you can choose Facebook or Twitter, but typically the Google content network is great but there’s lots of varieties in shapes and sizes.
- So, you get an idea of what your ads are going to say and then you get the dimensions for those ads and then just have a web developer or graphic designer make those specific ads. You can plug and upload all that artwork and you can turn the puppy on and let it track from there.
So that’s AdRoll, with no minimum budget. It sounded like there was another option as well?
- Yes. The other option is Retargeter.com and I’ve used both, but what I like about ReTargeter is that there’s an advertising campaign manager that runs and optimizes your ads for you.
- If you’re an entrepreneur and you’re doing too many things and you don’t have time to tinker with this stuff, then ReTargeter’s great because they’ll optimize not only these ads, but they’ll actually even run Google AdWords as well if that’s something you want to do.
- Part of the strategy is putting these pixels on your website and that’s great because you’re going to capitalize on people coming to your site and you can follow up with them.
- Where the strategy becomes really really powerful is when you combine retargeting with very targeted ads. If you’re marketing on Google for very specific keywords that’s so targeted (e.g., buying a home in pacific beach san diego) – that’s a buying keyword and I could use AdWords for it then retarget anyone that clicks on that landing page or website page.
- Facebook – one of our main strategies is we’ll drill down with our clients and we’ll market so narrow, so if it’s health and fitness – (e.g., women that are engaged that live in a particular geographic area near that gym). The ads might say something like “Congratulations on being engaged. We want to help you look your best on your big day. Here’s 7 ways to drop 10 pounds and glow on your wedding day.” That’s so targeted that when you’re using Google AdWords or Facebook to get to those people then when they land on your landing page and opt-in to the offer you’re sending to them then use retargeting on that traffic.
- That’s one of the things that makes it special. You zoom in and you target really well. You generate new leads and you follow up with those new leads using retargeting.
So, to be clear, when you’re using Google AdWords at the same time are you serving up the ads based on the retargeting, or are you targeting similar phrases?
- Whether there’s Google AdWords or Facebook Ads, that’s one way to go out and do your own lead generation. Whether you’re targeting the keywords or advertising to Pages on Facebook, that’s just a way to create good lead generation and then retargeting is always the after effect.
- It’s only once they click on that offer then they’re going to get retargeted using AdRoll and they’re going to be seen all throughout Google and random websites online.
But, our retargeting ads aren’t going to be a part of those Google AdWords like the “sponsored” ads on the side are they?
- No. Those are totally different.
- These are more display ads on different websites. When I say things like the Google content network, basically there’s millions of websites that sell space on their websites. So, instead of managing their own advertisers, let’s just say I’ve got a box on my website that I want someone to advertise there it could be a huge pain in the neck to try and get sponsors and all that stuff.
- Basically, they can sell that space to Google and Google will fill it up just by using things like remarketing and retargeting. It happens automatically.
So, when I set up my retargeting am I going to target people who maybe the last thing they saw was my SEO services, or could I set up three different campaigns based on the three different pixels that are in there?
- It can get pretty robust. It can literally be as in-depth and creative as you want to go.
- Think of it as having rules. You could set it up to be really intelligent about it and have different pixels on different pages so that you know exactly what’s happening. You can choose to segment.
- Think of it this way. In the same way you segment an email list that you have and you know that these 3,500 people purchased a product, and these 1,000 people opted in for an offer. The same way you tag people in your email list or in your CRM, the same thing is true with these pixels.
- The more detail you have in there the more creative and flexible you can be with how you want to serve ads to people. The cool thing is if you have different products I would put different pixels on each product and then it’s your choice when you want to serve those ads to those people – do you want to automatically have it be the last product they viewed? You can set it up that way. You can have it that when someone purchases that particular product think of it as having another pixel on the checkout page that essentially negates the one before it.
- Now, it doesn’t negate the pixel and just wipe it out, but it would be smart enough to know that it won’t continue to serve them ads because they just purchased. That’s cool because it’s intelligent enough to turn off after they’ve bought it so you’re not nagging someone that already bought it.
- I think overall, one of the most exciting aspects of this is that we all think about an email list as an asset for a business. Everyone’s always talking about the foundation for an entrepreneur or even small businesses is having an email list. That’s your follow up tool and that’s how you build rapport and relationships and that is what allows you to earn income and all that good stuff.
- The thing that’s interesting is that as you build up this virtual, invisible asset for your business, if you have 100,000 people pixeled imagine that I could take that virtual asset and decided to run ads for your event, Rich?
- That becomes something that I know they’re targeted entrepreneurs. I know that I’ve paid to get them pixeled. I’ve either ran Facebook ads to get them pixeled on that page or they landed on my website. They’re very targeted.
- The cool thing is, when I used to run my Facebook advertising agency I would do this and I would only choose clients that were in the space that I was in because I was building up this virtual asset of all these pixeled people that I could also serve ads.
- For example, if I had five clients that were all in the entrepreneur category, I could leverage this virtual asset that I owned as the advertising agency. I could leverage that asset for all of it.
- So, if it’s costing you a dollar to get someone to click from a Facebook ad to a very targeted landing page that’s a dollar. But, once they land on the page I already know that they’re a very targeted lead. Now it’s only going to cost me a penny to take that person and show them an ad again on retargeters.
- It’s a pretty good high quality asset I can use over and over which is great.
So, if I understand you, I don’t need to only drive people back to the website where they were first pixeled, I can really drive them anywhere?
- Absolutely, that’s what so cool, I mean if there’s awareness and they know you and your brand it’s more congruent and synergistic to send them things that are relatable to them and what they’re interested in. If they know you, and your face is on there for your company, then if your face is on those ads for your event, that’s very congruent and that’s going to convert and work well.
- However, if there was an affiliate product and thought your audience would also like that, you could be an affiliate and just serve those ads to a completely different offer. So wherever you choose to send them with those ads is totally your call.
- The cool thing is that no one knows who’s serving them the ads so you’re not going to tarnish a relationship with someone by sending them ads for an offer because they have no idea how they’re seeing them on that site.
- About four years ago I was getting into the industry and this and that. My goal was to build relationships with the “gurus,” the guys on the stages selling courses.
- What I did was I wanted to be an affiliate for them because that’s the fastest way to become friends with someone – you make them a whole bunch of money and all of a sudden they love you.
- So I became an affiliate and was selling their products and services and I didn’t have an email list. Even if I did have one, I wouldn’t want to hit up the email list over and over to make them buy people’s stuff and burn relationships. However, I decided to run ads on Facebook for their products and services and I just chose to give away an iPad to someone who purchased their product through me.
- If it was a $2,000 product and I got $1,000 in commission I’m up $500 (the paid is $500). So, I use that model of running ads as an affiliate and giving away a bonus and using retargeting and I crushed it. I literally had six figure gross promotions as an affiliate. It was unbelievable. It was like the easiest money I’ve ever made. I built tons of relationships.
- It got a little more competitive because I taught it at a couple seminars. Here I am sort of the guy with the big heart like, “oh my god, this is working so well you guys have to do it,” and then everyone started doing it.
- Building up this virtual asset and sending these people back to your offers – it’s all about being seen everywhere, builds up brand, and helps increase conversions.
- If you run ads on Facebook you’ll notice that if you’re running ads to 50,000 they won’t serve ads to 50,000 people your ad once, a second time, or a third time. If your budget is smaller, they will take 10,000 out of the 50,000 and they’ll show your ad 10-15 times before they’ll start showing the next 10,000 the next ad 10-15 times. They understand you can’t see the ad once. It has to be in their faces over and over and over.
- That’s exactly why AdRoll and retargeting work so well because it’s the frequency and it’s being seen everywhere.
I’ve heard there’s a minimum of site traffic I need for retargeting to really work. Can you speak to that?
- You’re basically paying on a CPM model, and it could be anywhere from $.50 to $1.50 per 1,000 people, so you want to have thousands of people pixeled.
- Your budget might be $.50 a month and that’s okay, but your goal is to have thousands of people and to build up this asset.
- You want to take your website traffic and ramp it up. If you don’t have a lot of people you can take this pixel and you can put it HTML email newsletter. You’re pixeling the people who open your email. You’re pixeling the people on your website. You might run Facebook ads and send that ad traffic on Facebook to a free offer that you then pixel there.
- The good thing about AdRoll is there is no minimum and you can get started even if it’s small. I would say start putting these pixels on your website right now and just build it up.
- As far as running ads to it, you’re not gonna get a whole lot of action if you only have 300 people in there. It can still be beneficial, but it’s just not a lot of people.
- We found that you really want to have over 10,000 people pixeled to get enough impressions and enough action in there.
Let’s say I don’t have 10,000 people pixeled. What are some of your tactics to get up that number?
- The number one thing is getting new traffic.
- Using Facebook advertising and running a campaign, getting very specific in who your target market is, so that when you run an ad on Facebook and you’re targeting that perfect customer, that ideal prospect, that’s so targeted. Even if someone comes to your website, people come and then bounce off if that’s not even as targeted.
- If you run a Facebook ad you can zoom all the way in. I could target my sweet spot, like men that are 28-33 that are interested in becoming an entrepreneur that like Gary Vaynerchuk, that like Entrepreneur on Fire, it’s like “boom,” if they have those qualities, they’re perfect for me.
- Then, I run an ad on Facebook and I might send them to a free webinar, or free video, or send them something of value. I’m sending them a gift because I want to then get their email address, but really all I want them to do in that Facebook ad is to click it. When they land on that website page the great thing is that even if they opt-in or they don’t opt-in to the goal (which is their email), I can still pixel them right then and there using Facebook ads and retargeting.
- Any business owner can use highly targeted Facebook ads, drive leads to your business, get those leads to cash flow and then pixel where they land so that you’re growing your base of pixeled browsers that you can then remarket to as well.
- That is the most efficient way because then you can track that campaign. Our goal is when we run a webinar where we sell we’ll track our Facebook ads. We’ll know how much it costs for someone to opt in. We’ll know how much it costs per thousand impressions we’re sending out on AdRoll.
- Then, we’re looking at things like what percentage of people showed up live to the webinar. What percentage of people converted that night. How much is our cost per sale.If we’re spending $300-$400 to get someone to purchase our $1000 product, that’s cool. If it costs us $450 for someone to buy but we’re selling at $1000 we will take that all day long and just increase the spend.
- The opportunity is that as long as you know your numbers and you can create conversions and even if you were to break even, I would rave that up all day long. The beautiful thing is that as soon as we have an offer that converts and we can make a positive return on our advertising expense, then it’s literally as simple as you just turn up and dial up the ad spend.
- So, if we earn two times our money on our Facebook advertising – for an example, we did a webinar, brought in customers for a little over $400, but we’re earning $997 and it’s all margin because it’s literally just my time to coach and we ran that and did about $20,000 in sales in about a week – so when we do this the next time we’re gonna ramp that up and quadruple our advertising budget and we’re going to do it again and again and again.
- That’s the beauty of paid media. Once you have an offer that converts you literally just increase and increase and increase. That’s how I’ve taken a client like Andrea B. who’s in aromatherapy. This woman did a webinar. The most she’s ever made in a month is $50,000. I taught her how to do webinars and she earned an extra $10,000. Her gross was $60,000 and she broke her own record. Since then, all we’ve done is increased her lead flow using Facebook ads. We’ve increased the number of people that’ve attended her webinars which she started because of us. We retargeted all those people and she went from $50k-60k, $60k-80k, from $80k-$125k, from $125k to up over $330,000 a month!
- All that is literally as simple as getting your offer to convert and then you’re just increasing your ad spend.
- Then you want to just find where that ceiling is. Her ceiling? Who knows? Maybe it’s $500,000 a month, maybe it’s a million a month. The great thing is that any business can scale and ramp up fast with paid advertising.
Is there a way to include that pixel on something like GoToWebinar or how might you hack that system to be sure I’m getting all that information?
- Basically when they provide you with that piece of code that goes on your website you are setting up those different pixels for those different scenarios.
- What happens is when that person lands on the site, the browsers contain all that data. There is definitely a turnover when someone clears out all their cookies or something like that. That will wipe out that browser data. Typically there’s not that much turnover from clearing cookies a whole lot. Us internet marketers might be more aware of it than the average consumer.
- You have the flexibility to create these on your own and how you would like and then when you’re serving your ads you want to make sure that you’re just using trackable links.
- I recommend using affiliate links for your own stuff so you can always track and know what’s converting from where. We just set it up using an affiliate program.
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