I realized that online retailers who sold products geared towards Comic-Con attendees missed a huge opportunity to capture an engaged audience that were using their mobile phones to compare prices. Showrooming is mobile price-comparing and it is believed that 84% of consumers who showroom start with search to begin this process. Pulling from my own experience on the show floor, with a wide range of prices for the same item, I found myself turning to my phone to validate prices and see if I was getting the best deal. If I saw a compelling deal online, I would have had no problem buying the item right then.
If I were running a mobile PPC campaign here are some techniques that I would use to capitalize on a Comic-Con hype.
Google AdWords gives you the ability to geo-target based on zip code and general location. This will allow you to set up a campaign targeted around the vicinity of the San Diego Convention Center. In addition I would recommend increasing your mobile bids by 10-20%. This precise targeting will give you a better chance to have top placement over ads targeting the general market.
Users turn to search engines to find answers. Use specific ad copy that aligns with the user's intent so your ads don't fall flat. Ads that feel like they were written specifically for that user will always get the click. Try testing copy that includes Comic Con in the headline or in the body copy. In addition provide a sense of urgency to buy your product right then and by including copy that offers free shipping, or limited time discounts. Remember the user is most likely comparing prices, so make it a no-brainer option for them.
The timing for ads is another important aspect of your PPC campaign. Take advantage of Google's ad scheduling feature to ensure you are only showing your ads during convention hours. Knowing that people might go back to their hotel to do research, it might be a good idea to extend your schedule into the evening. Google provides plenty of performance data that will allow you to fine tune your scheduling.
This opportunity is not just for online retailers. If your company has a booth at Comic-Con, take advantage of Google's offer extensions. Give them a reason to purchase by offering exclusive deals and discounts that they can only get from your booth.
Like it or not, showrooming is here to stay, so it's time for brands to get smart and utilize strategies that are aligned with the user's purchase journey.
If you have any questions or additional tips that have proven to be useful, feel free to leave them in the comments to keep the conversation going.