Why tour operators should use retargeting online ads

PicThrive - Retargeting


Retargeting, what’s the big deal? With traditional photo platforms and digital marketing you only expose your brand to people once. One shot to have your desired call to action to be completed. Why should you abandon that potential customer, after you have invested in getting their attention, after 1 try?

Let’s explore the value retargeting can provide to tour operators and see how it can significantly boost marketing returns.

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What is retargeting? Retargeting (sometimes referred to as remarketing) allows you to keep your brand in front of potential customers as they travel throughout the web, after visiting your web property once. Have you ever been on Amazon, looked at a product to buy and then visited Facebook? Did you notice an ad from Amazon for the product you viewed appear on Facebook? This is retargeting in action.

What happens is Facebook and Google can determine if a someone visited your site using a tracking pixel. When that person goes to another site, their ad networks can now target that user with an advertisement from you.

Retargeting Increase Conversion Rates

Unfortunately, the majority of visitors to a website leave without taking the marketers desired action because they are not ready to buy. This does not mean that those people are disinterested in your business, it could be due to many unknown factors like they don’t want to make a purchase right now, they want to share info with their significant other before making a decision or they want think about the decision.

If you can keep your brand in front of of these visitors, reminding them of the product they were looking at, you can increase the likelihood of converting them into customers. In fact, WordStream conducted a study and found that conversion rates increased by 130% due to more ad impressions per user. They achieved this using retargeting.


The data suggests that if a tour operator can keep its brand in front of people, it increases the likelihood of a sale. For one, you are there when a potential customer is ready to make a purchase decision. Secondly, you have built brand recognition with this person and therefore are the first company that comes to mind when they are thinking of tours. If using PicThrive, they would have seen their friend having a great time on your tour via their photos and already formed a closer bond to your brand.

Retargeting on Social & Web Increase Conversion Rates More

Marin Software studied the impact of placing retargeting ads on social sites and the web to see if it produced a higher return than only using a single ad network. They discovered that retargeting ads placed on both social and display web ad networks (ie Facebook and Google), generated more success than when an advertiser used a single network.




By taking a hybrid approach, a tour operator has the potential to significantly increase its digital marketing CTRs. It may require a little more time setting up display ads on both networks, but you have the potential to more than double your click through rates. When using PicThrive, you can use both Google and Facebook retargeting to build your audience and market to 1000s.

Retargeting Increases Your Brand’s Search Activity

According to a study conducted by comScore, retargeting  produced a 1,046% lift in a brand’s search activity. Retargeting produced the highest increase in search activity versus other advertising.

Lift in Trademark Search Within 4 Weeks of Exposure

Total U.S. – Home/Work/University Locations

Source: comScore AdEffx™

Lift Reach Index* Cost Index**
Retargeting 1,046% 30 373
Audience 514% 30 329
Premium 300% 21 1471
Contextual 130% 73 1473
RON 126% 100 100
Efficiency 100% 57 140
*Reach Index = Avg. Reach of Strategy/Avg. Reach of RON x 100

**Cost Index = Avg. Cost of Strategy/Avg. Cost of RON x 100

With the increased brand recognition from retargeting, this data leads one to believe that it causes an increase in brand name searches. Wouldn’t it be great if a potential customer no longer types in “whitewater rafting in Colorado” into Google, but instead searches your company’s name. Your website and tour will be the first hit, you won’t have to compete with others as highly on adwords and they will go straight to your website to learn more about your tours.

Remarketing is Cheaper

Search ads can be competitive, especially when you are competing with several tour operators, which means an expensive cost per click. While Google’s PPC search ads have a reported average cost per click of $2-$3, a remarketing ad only has an average cost of $0.25-$0.60.

As an advertiser, you are only paying if a person actually clicks your ad. This means that you can have a significant number of brand impressions, reminding that person about your brand, and it will not cost you anything.

A tour operator’s marketing budget can go further and can get more exposure at a fraction of the cost of search advertising. This means that you’re able to do more with less, and in doing so we would recommend taking a hybrid approach so that you are able to capture search intent.

Remarketing Works on Mobile, Social, Web & Video

Using Google’s retargeting you can advertise your tours on the largest collection of mobile apps, video content, and websites. Google provides you access to over 2 million sites for your ads to be displayed. This means that you are able to get your brand in front of your users no matter where they spend their time online.

Facebook is the largest social network in the world, with 1.44 billion active monthly users. An average a user spends 20+ minutes per day on Facebook. The average US consumer spends double this time at 40 minutes per day on Facebook.




Retargeting can help a tour operator get more customers at a cheaper rate by significantly increasing their brand recognition, improving their conversion rates and getting more searches for the company’s name. This marketing boost can have a real impact on revenue by providing a powerful way to get more people booking your tours. It’s a matter of leveraging the ad networks of Google and Facebook and building your audience.

Gone are the days where you were only able to get a person’s attention once. If you didn’t convert then and there, the sale was lost forever. Now a tour operator can keep their brand in front of these potential customers and increase their conversion rates and revenues.

PicThrive provides a great way for tour operators to use photos and retargeting from Facebook and Google. When your guests share their photos you receive all that traffic. This means that you are able to quickly build your retargeting audience with hot potential leads that were referred to you by their friends. You’re able to market your tour across Google’s and Facebook’s ad network. No longer do you have only one opportunity to convert 1000s of people into customers, now you have the opportunity to build a relationship with these people.

About PicThrive

PicThrive is a photo sales, customer engagement and marketing platform that is currently in private beta. Sign up now to get early access to a powerful customer engagement and marketing tool for your business.

PicThrive is on a mission to be the number one customer engagement and marketing platform for businesses to connect with clients and their network of family and friends using multimedia. We believe it is important to always innovate in engagement and conversion tools that maximize the user experience and get the best results possible for your business.

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