7 tips to help you improve your ad targeting
Targeting to improve your aim could be the adage of any advertising professional. Because what good is a message if it is not delivered to the right person? With increasingly powerful tools and online traffic increasing as connection speeds improve, players like you have a chance to shine. But what are the benefits of proper targeting and what methods should you apply? We’ll run through it all in detail in this article.
What are the benefits of good targeting?
Better level of personalization, better brand image impact, better use of resources and marketing efforts, better ROI: any campaign gets better with the right targeting. It actually significantly enhances it!
#1 - A better level of personalization
With an advertising market that is omnipresent in the public space, brands must intensify their efforts to attract the attention of their audience. Be it the space and time of publication or the advertising message, everything must now be “user-centric”.
This opinion is widely held in the industry. As far as 9 out of 10 agencies are concerned, personalized content appears to be the future of advertising, according to Monestate.
But what about the people who are most affected?
According to an Ignitech study, 51% of consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 say they are less interested in brands that don’t produce personalized content (which includes advertising).
So it’s in your best interest to focus on personalized content for your brand, not only to stay in the game, but to compete.
#2 - A better brand image
There’s nothing worse for your brand image than hype.
Users don’t like to see the same ad on a loop, even more so when it has no connection to what they are looking for.
Conversely, a targeted campaign will work in your favor. You’ll prove, through your personalized ads, that you understand your consumers’ expectations. And that’s one point for your brand!
According to a study by OnePot and Marketing Insider Group, 88% of consumers say that personalized content improves their brand image. You’ve got everything to gain.
#3 - A better use of marketing resources
Thanks to Big Data, it’s now easier to target a well-defined audience based on multiple criteria.
With the right targeting and automation tools, your marketing department can focus on the campaign and the creation of personalized content (or hire an agency).
This is a massive time saving that will allow you to focus on other brand development activities.
#4 - A better return on investment
Generic advertising is characterized by an impersonal message, targeting that is often too broad and overly high costs.
On the other hand, proper targeting allows you to create a campaign that is much more relevant because it addresses a much more qualified audience.
The last statistic highlighted in the Ignitech study proves it: 78% of consumers say that personalized content increases their intent to buy a brand or a product. Bingo!
7 methods for targeting ads
Keywords, behaviors, databases, geographic or socio-demographic – we reveal the secrets of seven infallible methods for targeting ads.
#1 - Targeting by keywords
Nowadays, everyone takes the same steps when searching for something online. We go to our smartphone or computer and find our favorite browser (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.)
Simple recipe ideas. Natural makeup remover. Cheap pre-washed jeans. How to fill a hole in a wall.
Whether the search takes the form of a few hastily typed words or a sentence with a subject and a verb, it contains very important elements: Keywords.
These keywords are evidence of an active search by an internet user. Of a need to understand something, to obtain information.
If you target the right keywords for your campaign, the advertising networks will reward you by directing internet users towards your website.
#2 - Geotargeting
No advertiser is going to distribute a print media campaign in a 30-kilometer radius around Manchester if their main target is in London. The same applies online.
By definition, geotargeting consists in defining one or more areas. A district, a city, a group of cities, a department, a whole region, or even a country? What is most important to you?
How does targeting help you? It enables you to adapt your message to the geographical area.
Take a moisturizing cream, for example. If you target Norway, you can emphasize the benefits of your product in providing protection against the cold. If you target Brazil, you can point to its advantages in a damp climate.
However, keep your objective in mind. The wider your geographic area, the more competition there will be – and the more your campaign will cost.
#3 - Socio-demographic targeting
What do Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube and TikTok have in common? All these social media platforms possess (very, very large) databases.
Do you want to target lawyers aged under 40 living in suburbs around Paris? You can do that. Do you want to target students living in Milan whose native language is Mandarin? You can do that too.
It is very easy to choose a very specific audience on these platforms once you have defined the criteria you wish to use.
There is another advantage: this meticulous targeting ensures better control of your advertising budget.
Why? Because the audience decreases as you hone your campaign with new criteria, so lowering the overall cost of your campaign.
#4 - Targeting by interests
Billions of internet users every day show what they are interested in online.
How? By liking an Instagram post, sharing an inspiring post on LinkedIn, retweeting, etc.
In short, this applies to everyone who has a profile on any social media platform. You too.
This information does not fall on deaf ears. The social media networks have powerful algorithms which make it possible to determine what every user likes depending on their centers of interest.
This is a goldmine from which you can dig out precious information enabling you to target a group of people who have shared interests.
#5 - Targeting by behaviors
Everyone has their own way of doing things, whether on search engines or mobile apps.
If you go through a friend’s phone (with permission, of course), you will see that the apps are not organized in the same way as yours.
Some of the platforms have been able to learn from these differences. The advantage of targeting by behavior? It is very specific.
User behaviors (links clicked, purchases, time spent on a website, etc.) are studied. By choosing your target group, you can run your advertising campaign at the most favorable time. The right message at the right time.
#6 - Targeting by database
If you want to reach your targets directly, the best way is still to get to them by direct methods, such as e-mail or a telephone call.
Of course, targeted campaigns using a database can seem old-fashioned, from before the time that social media started to dominate the advertising market.
But user addresses and telephone numbers are still a means of contact like any other.
Used well – in a marketing campaign, for example – they can be very effective. And less expensive!
#7 - Contextual targeting
This type of targeting brings together several of the methods already described, such as keywords, interests and behaviors.
As an illustration, let’s take the example of Sophia, who started an online painting course last week (targeting by keywords). Sophia is improving her brush control by using YouTube videos (targeting by interests and behaviors).
All this online activity has been noticed by the advertising networks. All the information can help them to target her more effectively.
In its glossary, Google Ads explains that it lines up your adverts with relevant sites on the Display Network, depending, for example, on your keywords or theme ».
Once again, it’s a case of the right message at the right time.
The idea behind contextual targeting is to avoid distorting Céline’s online activity by showing her a product on just any website. Contextual targeting puts exclusive emphasis on discreet and relevant integration of the ad.
How does it do this? With banner ads on stationery marketplaces, painters’ blogs or online art galleries, for example.
#8 - Bonus method - remarketing
Ah, we got you there! Yes, you are right. There were seven advertising methods on the list. However, an eighth method has got tangled up with them: remarketing.
Look at remarketing (also known as retargeting) as a backpack carried by an internet user searching the web before making a decision.
What is the recipe for an effective remarketing campaign? It is simple:
👉 Start your campaign by creating a tracking code (or conversion pixel) for your website.
👉 Wait for a potential customer to visit the website – and leave without buying anything. (Oh, no!)
👉 By means of your tracking cookie, your remarketing campaign will appear as the user continues to search other sites online.
👉 Persuaded by the ad, they will click on it, return to your website, and complete their purchase!
This is a tried and tested technique! According to Wishpond’s graphic:
💡 70% of web users targeted by this type of advertising are more likely to convert on the advertiser’s website.
💡 The click rate for these ads is ten times greater than that of standard banner ads.
You now know which targeting methods to use, depending on what you are aiming to achieve. But how will you check your campaign and assess whether it is really effective?
All you have to do is carry out post-tests (or brand lifts)! These will also enable you to assess the effectiveness of your creative team and the impact on your brand or your products.
If you work in an agency, brand lifts will help you reassure your clients and secure their loyalty by demonstrating the relevance of your targeting and the benefits for their brand image.