Behavioral Targeting   

For years, many companies have relied on traditional marketing to encourage consumers to make a purchase. They spend a huge amount of resources on acreating compelling broad-reach ads to capture their audience and convert them into buyers. And while several advertisements succeed in amplifying brand visibility and building equity, some fail to deliver the intended message and to prompt the desired action from target consumers. 

With the advances in technology shaping trends across different industries, the advertising and marketing landscape has changed significantly. Today, having a more focused advertising campaign is rewarded with higher engagement and conversion rates

With behavioral advertising, marketers can utilize data on consumer behaviors to drive content that presents more relevant and more effective messages. It is an approach that enables marketers and publishers to target consumers based on their online browsing and even online shopping patterns. 

For example: if a consumer searches for a garden hose via an e-commerce platform but doesn’t proceed with a purchase, brands can retarget them with garden hose ads on different digital channels. Because advertisements are directed towards consumers who have already displayed interest in a product or service, the likelihood of responding to the ad and making a purchase increases. 

Behavioral targeting relies on data, such as what pages the user has viewed, the search terms they used, the ads they’ve clicked on, and other factors that can help create customized and relevant ads.

Types of Behavioral Targeting

There are two types of behavioral targeting.

  • Onsite behavioral targeting

This type occurs within a particular site. It focuses on giving the user a personalized website experience by displaying ads according to behavioral patterns observed from other pages on the same site. 

It lets advertisers and publishers show relevant ads that can prompt a desired lead-generating action from site users, like subscribing, inquiring, or purchasing.

Network behavioral targeting 

This approach involves making implied choices for the target audience. Advertisers collect data, like purchase intent and interests, and use the information to offer a retargeted and more personalized campaign. 

It enables advertisers and publishers to collect data, like cookies and IP addresses, and share these across multiple sites. 

The information is processed through an algorithm that can produce a preconceived “image” of a buyer, such as their age and possible purchase decision, enabling networks to craft highly customized campaigns that users are more likely to click on. 

How Behavioral Targeting Works

Behavioral targeting begins with gathering pertinent data about a consumer, like the pages they visit or the previous purchases they’ve made. This can be done by tracking their actions on several channels, such as websites or applications. 

Consumer data is then analyzed to create user segments or profiles. For instance, users can be assigned to segments according to preference categories like “individuals who like bikes” or “people who frequently buy cakes”.

With data application, advertisers and publishers can come up with unique campaigns that match user preferences, thus offering their audience a more personalized campaign experience. Even video platforms can give users watch list recommendations based on the types of content they searched for or viewed before. 

Advertisers will then measure and analyze their content using tools like analytics and A/B testing to find out if their campaign is on track.

Why Behavioral Targeting is Important

Behavioral targeting has several advantages for both the advertiser and the consumer. It can:

  • Drive an increase in user engagement

Behavioral targeting enables advertisers to connect with users who have specific habits or engage with particular types of content. Advertisers and publishers can create ads that allow users to easily access information about a company, giving them a sense of openness and trust, which are crucial in fostering consumer engagement. 

  • Lead to more ad click-throughs

Relevant ads are more likely to receive more clicks. If you create personalized ad campaigns that resonate with the customers’ preferences, they are more likely to take action. They might want to learn more about a certain brand or find similar products or services within the site. 

  • Deliver better conversion rates

Targeted ads appear to be more relevant to users and can prompt them to do a desired action, such as learning more about a product or making a purchase. This, in turn, helps companies see an increase in sales, patrons, and revenue. 

  • Give users an improved experience

Aside from giving users a more satisfying ad experience, behavioral targeting can provide a more pleasant and convenient online shopping journey. The approach makes it easier for consumers to find relevant products and know more about them. With a few clicks, they can breeze through the “add to cart” and checkout process.

About the Author
Werner Geyser, founder of Influencer Marketing Hub, is a distinguished digital marketing expert with over 18 years of experience working with marketing agencies and marketing software companies. Werner successfully scaled Influencer Marketing Hub to 5 million monthly visitors, establishing it as a premier destination for influencer marketing resources. His keen expertise is further highlighted by his collaboration with social media marketing platforms such as Brandwatch and Upfluence, as well as his impactful contributions to top-tier influencer and digital marketing agencies including Viral Nation and NeoReach. His engagements with these industry leaders exemplify his depth of knowledge and the trust placed in his capabilities, positioning him as a leader of innovation in digital marketing.