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Targeting – what is it about?

The more precisely you define your target group, the more effective your advertising campaigns will be. Even the most refined message will not fulfil its function if it’s displayed to wrong recipients, not interested in the given products or services. This is why it is so important to target the target group, which not only allows for reaching the right people, but also for optimisation  of advertising campaign spending. What is actually targeting? What are other benefits of using this tool?

What is marketing targeting?

Simply put, targeting is a tailor-made advertisement that should reach a potentially interested recipient. Thanks to this, the campaign has the best chance of achieving the expected conversion, and thus – obtaining even better sales results. One of the biggest mistakes marketers make is that they define the target group too broadly or, even worse, do not define it at all. This is a straightforward way to blow your campaign budget, which can cause large losses to your business. On the other hand, broad advertising targeting can affect brand recognition and raise awareness. However, the main goal of each company is to attract as many customers as possible with a relatively low financial expenditure. It is possible, as long as we define the target well and plan the advertising campaign in detail.

Behavioural targeting

Consumers pay attention to advertisements that meet their needs and interests, and match their shopping habits. Until recently, a great achievement in the field of internet marketing, related to the development of web 2.0, was the adaptation of the advertising message to people of specific age and gender (demographic targeting) or matching the advertisement to the content on the website, e.g. along with a review of the cosmetic, where a banner with the offer of the store offering this product was displayed. The world of marketing is evolving and allows for running more advanced advertising campaigns based on more specific criteria. This is what we call behavioural targeting, also known as audience targeting. It mainly includes user segmentation based on behaviour on the website (e.g. purchased products, clicked links, website searches).

An equally important issue is behavioural targeting based on the history of products viewed, which allows for creating a customer profile and displaying customised ads. Behavioural targeting, also known as behavioural advertising, includes an effective tactic, the one of retargeting. It consists in showing the user an advertisement with the recently viewed product even after leaving the website.

Contextual targeting

It is also worth looking at contextual targeting. Its principle is very simple – based on the subject of the website or assigned keywords, an advertisement corresponding to the specific topic will be displayed. Such consistency significantly increases the chance of clicking on a given message. A travel equipment company can achieve better sales results when it advertises on a travel-themed website. Then the target group will receive appropriately matched messages. What does contextual targeting look like in practice? For example, Google analyses the content of a given website, defining its main subject. On that basis, ads are displayed to users on relevant pages in terms of topics or predetermined keywords.

Other types of targeting

It is also worth distinguishing microtargeting (hypertargeting) as a type of targeting in general. Microtargeting goes deeper, because it matches products and the message to a carefully selected group of customers even more accurately. One of the channels that use micro-targeting is social media. Messages are tailored to the social status, lifestyle and even dialect of the target audience. Ads should have an appropriate emotional load, i.e. arouse curiosity and encourage interaction. Another model of advertising targeting is custom targeting, which results in the possibility of reaching users according to psychographic and demographic criteria. The target, meaning the target group, is chosen on the basis of selected, strictly defined criteria, e.g. the choice of competitive products.

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