Remember how words from a trusted and respected relative often can alter your view on something, say, a product or service, and make you ultimately switch your loyalty from one company to a competing organization? Well, that notion of psychological weight in purchasing decisions—meaning you buy something based on someone else’s opinion—also applies online. And this, in a nutshell, is what behavioral targeting is all about: suggesting things you may like based on past behavior or recommendations from others.
What It Is
Simply put, behavioral targeting involves the use of sophisticated algorithms and procedures to show you ads and other promotional content that you most likely will relish. Various groups use behavioral targeting to peek into your purchasing habits and, hopefully, draw a few (hundred) dollars off your wallet. These include online publishers—think of the Web version of your local newspaper—advertising networks and content providers. This type of marketing targeting aims to increase conversions and revenue by anticipating the needs of a customer, so that he or she can actually buy the product or service after seeing the ad. There are two types of behavioral targeting: onsite and network. Onsite behavior targeting will suit you if your business is small and you only want to reach a limited number of prospects. Opt for network targeting to reach a larger audience.
What It Is Not
Behavioral targeting does not aim to delve into customers’ private data or payment information. So, don’t worry about privacy concerns. But if you want to have peace of mind, hire someone proficient in Internet privacy legislation. My favorite and cheaper recommendation is to use specialized tools like Maxymiser which have built-in mechanisms to perform content targeting while complying with privacy laws and safeguarding customers’ information.
Why You Need It
You need behavioral targeting for several reasons.
- For starters, you increase conversion rates if you can display the right ad in front the right customer at the right time. Higher conversions mean a rosier bottom line and more money in your (company’s) bank account.
- Second, effective behavioral targeting promotes repeat business, especially if the customer thinks that you offer an affordable yet top-quality product or service.
- Third, stellar behavioral targeting polishes your brand and enhances your company’s competitive stature.
- Fourth, you see more traffic to your website.
- Fifth and last, but not the least, you see higher engagement from your existing and potential customers, whether it is on your website or social networks like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn or Google+.
If designed and implemented correctly, behavioral targeting can lift your business up from the operational abyss in which it is, giving you the tools to properly identify what your potential customers want and enjoy, and how you can design a proper marketing campaign to seize those opportunities. Even if you’re doing good, financially speaking, it doesn’t hurt to implement good behavioral targeting measures to make more money, does it? To increase your chances of success, do your homework, use online analytical tools and hire external help, if needed.