How are your Audiences Behaving?

av Eddie Payton

If you’ve read up on inbound marketing, you’ve heard about how you can focus your promoted posts to people who truly want and need what you have to offer. There’s something magical behind all that. We call it behavioral targeting.

You’ll notice usually when you shop online, the website pushes to get you to create an account before or during your purchase. If you’ve done so, you’ll start to benefit from behavioral targeting. Each purchase you make will help the shop’s algorithm make decisions to suggest future products to you that fit your interests or could be an appropriate related product to a previous purchase.

It’s not just for online shops

But wait, there’s more! This is where it gets exciting. Targeting based on behavior is definitely not exclusive to online shops. Users’ behavior through social media and search engines are logged in order to record interests, region, and past purchases. As they collect data, algorithms are used to predict what may interest a user in the future. That way, a sponsored ad for baby supplies shows up for pregnant women and new mothers rather than a boy in high school.  

Behavioral targeting isn’t even limited to the types of ads. Since everyone has different preferences and grew up in different cultures, advertisers have found that even a different version of the same ad can make a sizable difference on the effectiveness of an advertisement.

What kind of information is available?

When a site is collecting data on your visit, you’ll get a notification asking if you’d like to allow them to use cookies. These cookies collect data on your habits on their website. Search engines themselves also collect these cookies and connect them to your user account.

-          Locations

-          Purchase history

-          Daily habits

Knowing where and when a user spends most of their time and money can lead to insights on which kinds of products and services they might be interested in. Entering another website on the same internet browser will help the new site cater their ads and product selections to their new user thanks to cookie-sharing.

Focus ads based on behavior

Users go to all sorts of sites and look at many different products, but you want to make sure your ads go to people who are actually interested. Just the same, users don’t want to see ads that aren’t something they have a use for. To weed out the wrong audience, behavioral targeting can take into account the time a user stays on a certain webpage and which themes are most often found on these pages. In addition, the interactions a user makes with the webpage are collected for targeting. Users who set a product into their shopping cart should get more appropriate ads than another user who only spent a minute on the same product’s page. In general, placing an ad in front of a user who’s already interested in the product is smart marketing.

Separate your target audiences

Let’s look at an example of an advertisement for a fictional mobile photography app that I want to promote in Europe. Although I want as many people as possible to buy and install my app, promoting the app with generic ads would likely be wasting my budget. Instead, the ads can be targeted specifically towards people who are interested in this app. Here are some demographics that would interest me: Region, language, age, gender, search keywords, device, daytime use, etc.

To get the best results, I should have two different ads for a German girl in Berlin using an iPhone and an American man in Chicago who owns a Samsung phone. I’m more likely to turn the German girl into a customer with an ad written in German and a link to the Apple app store in the evening, local time, while the American would likely ignore an identical ad if it were to show on is social media feed.

Alright, how do I get started?

There are many resources out there if you’re building a site where you want to advertise your own products on your site like Amazon does. If you’re looking to promote posts on Facebook and Instagram or targeting your ads on Google’s services, Racer’s digital marketing consultants have the expertise and knowledge of how to find your ideal target audiences and optimize your advertisements to their needs.


Did we miss something? Contact us if you have any questions about optimizing your digital marketing strategy with behavioral targeting!