Just an Online Minute... More Online Behavior Targeting
I'm talking about the three announcements made last week by (1) the Wall Street Journal, where the company said it can now target specific ads to individual subscribers based on their site-usage characteristics; (2) Belo Interactive, which said it would combine its user registration data with audience tracking to allow advertisers to reach Web audiences by demographic profile, customer location, or online behavior; and (3) the Cleveland.com/Tacoda case study, which showed that online ads delivered to audience segments defined by their navigational behavior had response rates 333% better than ads delivered into a contextual environment alone.
The WSJ announcement initially raised some privacy questions, which were quickly put to rest by that feel-good word "anonymous." Also, some quickly pointed out that the announcement is more of an admittance of a common practice than an unveiling of a new initiative, but either way, I think this is a great development for the industry. I also say we should agree to call it "online behavior targeting" and stop introducing new terms into the glossary.
This might just end up being the one thing that truly delivers on the promise of the web. As The Journal's VP of Advertising Randy Kilgore said, online behavior targeting will allow advertisers to target audiences based on viewers' interests and behavior, adding an exciting new dimension of opportunities, and Tacoda CEO Dave Morgan said it is a win-win for everyone - as publishers begin to merge their user data and segment their audiences, advertisers will see more value from their campaigns.
Incidentally, the company providing the technology that make all this possible for the WSJ is Revenue Science (formerly digiMine.)