Should Your Clients Be Using Display Advertising?
As you’ve heard me say time and again, implementing a successful marketing strategy is about embracing a systematic approach. We at Duct Tape Marketing use our Marketing Maturity Index to guide our clients through the process of establishing and then supercharging marketing efforts that embrace various channels to reach their intended audience.
Display advertising certainly has a place in a comprehensive marketing strategy, and for us, we like to include it in the second stage (what we call the grow stage).
Here, we’ll take a look at how to incorporate display advertising with your broader strategy for any given client, and what the best ways are to leverage its capabilities.
Where Does Display Advertising Fit In?
When you begin working with a new client, it makes sense to start at the very beginning. You want to ensure that their most basic marketing assets are in a good place before you begin expanding upon those efforts. That’s why, as a part of our Marketing Maturity Index, we start with things like getting a solid website up and running and establishing a presence across relevant social media channels.
Once you have those basics set up, though, it’s time to introduce tactics that can get your clients in front of a whole new audience of relevant prospects so that they can begin to grow their business.
The second stage is where we introduce paid lead generation, which includes display ads. At this point in the Marketing Maturity Index, you’re juggling eight marketing channels, and display advertising is only a third of one of them. With it only accounting for a small portion of your efforts on behalf of clients, here are some of the ways to get it working smarter for them and you.
Use Banner Ads for the Know and Like Stages
Display advertising comes in a variety of shapes and sizes. What you probably think of when you hear the term is a banner ad. These simple ads are great for generating brand recognition for your client’s business, and are a smart way to get in front of prospects during the first two stages of the marketing hourglass. The more regularly consumers see your client’s name across various websites on the internet, the more likely they are to feel like they are familiar with the brand and begin to trust them.
Use Retargeting for Later Stages
Retargeting is a component of display advertising that’s aimed at people further along the marketing hourglass. If someone has already interacted with your client’s brand online, retargeting is a way to show relevant ads based on the prospect’s viewing history.
For example, if your client is a clothing store and a prospect recently browsed through dresses on your client’s website, a retargeted ad might show that same prospect images of the dresses and an announcement of an upcoming sale.
Retargeting is a great way to capture those in the try and buy stages, who are giving your client’s business a shot for the first time. They can also work to capture the attention of repeat customers; if they were comparison shopping between your client and a competitor, the retargeted ads can sometimes be the final push they need to go with your client.
Mix Up Your Medium
A great display ad is about more than smart writing. Including bold, enticing images of your clients products will help the ad pop on the top or side of the webpage. It’s also possible to incorporate video into display ads for clients. Creating ads that speak to more than one sense is a way to stand out from the crowd of boring, simple banner ads.
Avoid Some Common Mistakes
The biggest potential pitfall when it comes to display advertising is that a poorly designed campaign can be annoying. Video ads that begin to play, unprompted, are irritating to someone who’s just trying to read a website in peace. Banner ads that flash and distract are similarly grating. While you want to create an ad that pops, you also want to do your best to complement (but not blend in with!) your surroundings.
It’s a tricky balance, and the best way to achieve it is to remain true to your client’s brand. By developing an ad that embraces their color scheme, voice, and tone, you make the ad more easily recognizable for those who are familiar with the brand. That brand recognition means they’re all the more likely to notice and register that the ad is for a business they already know and like. For those who don’t already know your client, the cohesive branding means that they’ll feel a greater sense of trust when they click the ad and are taken to your client’s website that has a similar vibe.
Display advertising is a small but important part of a complete marketing strategy. When it’s time for you to take your client’s marketing to the next level and you begin to introduce paid lead generation, you should include display advertising in those efforts.
If you liked this post, check out our Small Business Guide to Paid Search.