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Optimizing Online Display Ads—5 Tips for Better Campaigns With New Data Sources

February 11, 2013 By Tami Kelly and Rick Witsell
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What if the historically beneficial Recency-Frequency-Monetary (RFM) model deployed by offline direct marketers were readily available for targeting online display advertising campaigns? The question is no longer "if."

It's hard to beat actual purchase history when it comes to finding responsive consumers. A large, well-developed and continuously updated source of purchase transactions generates the power behind relevant advertising—consumer insight. Online display advertisers are beginning to learn how to apply aggregated transactions as a component of their overall digital targeting strategy to achieve and exceed campaign goals.

Anonymized transaction variables can be used by marketers to target predictive qualities such as purchase affinities, long-term loyalty, multibuyer behaviors and, yes, RFM metrics. Predictive performance information will become increasingly important to advertisers as they seek new strategies for improving ROI from their online campaigns.

Here are some tips for marketers that seek greater productivity from their current online display advertising efforts, taking into account some of the new data sources available.

1. Understand Your Target Audience and Campaign Goals
Many marketers spend resources on research, creative and production, etc., while neglecting development of a sophisticated targeting strategy. With current technologies, very specific targeting can occur. Leveraging data such as  anonymized consumer purchase and performance histories to enhance audience selection (disclosure: Legolas Media works with Alliant for this) reduces waste and amplifies results.

2. Test Multiple Targeting Strategies and Creatives
Some marketers launch campaigns with more than a dozen separate audience targets, all with multiple creative variations. In online display, these can easily be tracked and adjusted for optimal results as the campaign progresses.

3. Deliver Relevant Ads to Consumers in Different Stages of the Sales Cycle
Marketers should care about where consumers are in the purchase funnel stages as well as their overall purchase history. In understanding both areas, brands can tailor ads to the call-to-action (CTA) that resonates best with each audience.

A consumer at the top of the funnel is sorting through all options. However, as that same consumer moves further along the purchase cycle, he or she becomes more interested in getting the best deal or buying the product with the best features. Alternately, a consumer who made a purchase as recently as a few months ago needs a reason to do so again. Targeting audiences with creative that speaks to their specific needs will help marketers improve ROI in their digital display efforts.

 

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