The days of blanketing large groups of customers with messaging are gone. There is no one size fits all for customers, but faced with pressure to produce higher return on diminishing budgets, the customer engagement dilemma becomes more difficult for advertisers by the day.
In the end, it comes down to money. Advertisers want to spend the least amount of money to produce the most revenue. They want to overcome the issue memorialized by John Wanamaker, the pioneer of the discount department store, who famously said, "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don't know which half." The good news is that advances in real time technology have enabled them to do exactly that.
Benefit #1: Customer Knowledge
With real time technology, advertisers have the ability to target the customer they want, at the right time. A marketer would likely value a customer planning to purchase their product right now much more than a customer who is unlikely to purchase their product anytime soon. The available data lets us know more about existing consumers than ever before, enabling advertisers to better define their target customers. The advertiser can not only target individuals with certain defined attributes in real-time, but they can also target the specific individuals who have self-stated purchase intent, whether it's through context or search. This takes some of the guesswork out of gauging a consumer's purchase intent, and results in better outcomes for advertisers
Benefit #2: Feedback
The second important aspect of real time engagement is the power of feedback. Traditionally you would analyze the success of a campaign after it finished. With real time reporting features, successes can be seen as they happen and changes can be made quickly to underperforming variables. The value comes from the ability to change the allocation of budgets from low performing campaigns to those producing revenue. This also creates a trial and error environment, giving advertisers a chance to learn more about their customers, and get a better sense of how receptive they are to advertising approaches. Real time reporting and analytics combined with targeted advertising results in a strong strategy that brings the greatest value.
Benefit #3: Context
Finally, programmatic solutions can be employed that focus on one particular type of customer within a certain context. Advertisers can adjust campaigns based on certain circumstances that work best for the business at any given time. For example, if a call center is underutilized, you may want to increase their bids on calls to drive more of this type of engagement. Programmatic campaigns can also be useful for consumer retention. Advertisers can target customers who have already purchased a product from them with different variations of the brand. So if you've sold someone a basic health insurance plan, you can use a programmatic campaign to now upsell them to the premier plan. Real time programmatic technology can really help tailor your advertising strategy further to reach your specific goals.
Advances in real time ad tech mean better value when it comes to digital advertising and real time technology. The better an advertiser is able to target a consumer, and the more transparency they have in the performance of their ad spend through reporting and feedback, the higher the odds are of converting that consumer into a customer. Further, advances in programmatic advertising technology help advertisers tailor their campaigns to the attainment of very specific goals at any given time.
All of this couldn't be possible without the power of real time bidding and targeting. What's even more exciting is that this technology is just emerging, and there are more and more tools being innovated every day. Advertisers have a lot to look forward to.
Title image by hxdbzy (Shutterstock)
About the Author
Patrick Quigley is CEO of Los Angeles-based advertising technology company Vantage Media and has more than 15 years experience in sales, marketing, product management and engineering with both public and private companies.
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