Targeted Advertising

Behavioural Targeting

Behavioural Targeting

I read an article earlier this week that claimed that 99% do digital advertisements are incorrectly targeted. This seems like a massive number to me, but maybe I am bias being a digital marketer who spends a lot of time thinking ant how to advertise to our target audiences – perhaps other people don’t do that, and if they don’t, then here are 5 segmentation tips which should help you get more bang for your digital advertising buck.

This is not always applicable as a lot of products and services are applicable to both sexes. However,  even if this is the case, why would you not shape your message differently for each of these groups? We know that different genders respond better to different messages, so for the same of a little more investment in your creative, your end result could be far more impressive (as lone as you avoid cringeworthy stereotypes).

There are a number of organisations which only want to talk to particular parts of the country or world. Not every affiliate website that you would like to advertise on will be able to split their audience by geography, but the Google Display Network is a good place to start – it’s targeting has improved dramatically over the last couple of years. You may need to pay a higher CPM for geographic targeting, but it will ensure your audience is relevant.

This is a big one, and hitting the people with the right lifestyle for your product or service is a marketers dream. And it has never been easier to get it right (or get pretty close!). In the world of social media advertising, particularly on Facebook, this can be really fine-tuned (e.g. To target people who are in a relationship or not!) so you should press your product / brand marketers to give direction on their personas.

Day of week:
Why don’t you pop into Google Analytics and take a look at the day of the week where most visits to your website occur. Compare this to when you think your customer is looking for their product. You should start to develop some idea of when in the day / week / month / year you should be speaking to your audience. Don’t fall into the trap of a fashion house in the US who only posted Monday to Friday 9 – 5 and didn’t realise that their customers were most receptive at the weekend.

The natural answer to what device to target is both – we want to capture as many people as possible. However, the type of device can open up a lot of possibilities. If someone is within 100m of your shop and they have just searched for your product, surely you want them to see your advert? Mobile advertising is a massive opportunity that I haven’t seen many people completely crack, so watch this space for some best practice starting to develop soon.

So, when your boss starts talking about wanting their advertising budget to hit as many people as possible, tell them that 99% of digital adverts are incorrectly targeted and hitting everyone is a waste of budget – getting your targeting right will push your ads into the top 1% in the digital world….which should make for a happy boss!

Are Display Ads Dead?



I saw a HubSpot article earlier this week which showed some pretty alarming statistics about on-line display ads:

  • 8% of internet users account for 85% of display ad clicks (and not all of them are human)
  • You are more likely to summit Mount Everest than click on a banner ad
  • You are more likely to survive a plane crash than click a banner ad

So, on this evidence, display ads are a thing of the past, right?  Well, no.  Firstly, the context of these stats is not clear, so we should only take them at face value.  But is the point that they are making fair?

Imagine this scenario – you run a company who sells widgets to other businesses and has been doing so for 10 years.  When you are advertising to your current customer base, you need to drive direct responses.  So, your strategy is to drive enquiries, and your objective is to drive the target audience to your website to find out more. In this case, display ads are not the tool for you – an average click through rate is 0.1%, so you will need 1000 impressions of your ad before you receive just one click. 

However, if you have decided to start selling your widgets to a brand new audience, then your strategy will be to raise awareness of your product to this new audience – you want to get your name out to this new audience, so on-line display ads could be the answer.  Your objective is brand awareness with this new audience, not necessarily clicks.

So, as with every marketing campaign, the objective should help to tell you what tool you should use to get the maximum return – if its clicks and visits to the site, maybe look at PPC; if its awareness, then on-line display ads could be right. 

If you have an on-line display ad campaign with well-targeted keywords, a website which your audience frequently visits, a memorable ad creative, and you want to get this message in front of thousands of your target audience at relatively low cost, then on-line display ads are not dead – in fact, they might just be the tool you are looking for. 

(image from