Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Pitfalls of Demo/Behavioural Targeting

Last month a friend of mine turned 40. An interesting milestone for us women - a trying, perhaps challenging time as you can imagine. What we need to make us feel better at these times is a lot of reminders of how fabulous we are regardless of age.

The last thing we need is to be served a banner ad telling us to check out “hairstyles for women in their 40’s” which is exactly what happened to her last week!

Oh the horror! Oh the really bad media planning!

Now what you need to know is that this friend of mine is an extremely ‘trendy’ woman, very sheik, on top of the latest fashion trends, not at all the type of person who needs to be told what her hair should look like now that she is 40.

Do you think the ad achieved what it had intended to do? Get a response? Raise ‘brand awareness’ so that the next time my friend wants to explore new hair styles she would think of that brand first...? Nope! The ad left her feeling insulted & hurt! The only good thing the ad managed to achieve was to give us a great example of how bad media planning can easily create a negative brand experience.

Some Media Planners don’t think twice about applying ‘age targeting’ & serving ads within ‘contextually relevant environments’ but with the array of ‘behavioural’ targeting options at our disposal now it is negligent not to look deeper at your audience & apply an exclusion list to avoid insulting them.

Behavioural Exclusion works in the same way as ‘negative’ keywords work in search – allows you to avoid targeting people who have demonstrated a certain behaviour making them irrelevant to your product/campaign message. In this case, they could have excluded women in their 40’s who had visited ‘fashion/magazine/lifestyle’ sites in recent past, marking themselves as ‘trendy’ women NOT in need of hairstyle advice.

Mehrak Saheb

Prophesy Digital

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