The Magic of Retargeting

Author: newmediaco
Where is the digital marketing world moving to next?

It’s become no surprise now when we see an ad on the side of a website that actually relates to your interests. If you’ve been doing some online shopping for some new summer shoes, you expect to see sandals and flip flops popping up here, there and everywhere when you next go online. All of this is a bit of magic called Retargeting.

Retargeting is growing, and is fast becoming a core part of the advertising industry. It is such a complex (and magical) system that is highly effective, and marketers would be silly to not take advantage of it.

Now you’ve got the gist of what I’m talking about, we’re going to go into a bit more detail. We want more people to be aware, and in awe, of how much actually happens and how advanced technology has become compared to the traditional ways of advertising. Do you know how fast the retargeting process actually is? I’m not just looking for ‘super-fast’ as the answer. Although, it is super fast!

So we’ve all heard of cookies; if you haven’t then these are basically the little internet minions used to collect all your personal preferences so as to better target ads. These minions put together a picture of individuals based on assumptions (from the websites you’ve visited, and things you’ve clicked) about their age, gender, race, marital status, income, location and interests. These are then used to place more precise and targeted ads in front of you. But the decision of which ad will win that spot occurs before the webpage loads.

It takes less than 200 millionths of a second from clicking your mouse, having your data sent across the globe, and going through a huge online advertising auction, to seeing the winning banner ad. This huge online advertising auction is also known as Real-Time Bidding (RTB).


[Source: Periscopix]

RTB is as simple as the image above, yet it all happens in millionths of a second and with huge amounts of data. Some examples of leading RTB programs are Google Adwords; while an example of one of the biggest ad exchanges is Google’s DoubleClick.

The trouble advertisers are coming across now though is the fact that we’re all crazy for mobile devices, and multiples of them! So a targeted ad on the TV won’t be as effective when the viewer turns to his mobile while the TV advert is playing. This is when even smarter technology, and more magic, has to be implemented. There’s talk of the targeted ads that were meant to be shown on the TV screen popping up on your mobile device. In other words, because we’re all engulfed in this mobile frenzy, there is still a chance we see the desired ad.  Myriad behavioural data tries to guess what TV program each household is watching so as to deliver the appropriate ad to their mobile device as it’s being broadcast on TV.

It’s all very complex, fast and oh-so-very smart, it has to be magic!

Author: newmediaco

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