Households & Within: The Trend Toward Blended Targeting

When examining the customer journey, it is clear that cross device targeting is essential for any effective campaign. Indeed, a majority of senior marketers surveyed by the IAB earlier this year confirmed that cross-device audience recognition is an area that is getting considerable attention in 2018.

However, the targeting of those devices remains an area where advertisers are still seeking better solutions. In this pursuit, many advertisers are turning to a blended tactic, targeting both households and the consumers within.

Why is this? According to a recent eMarketer report, household targeting can make sense for products or services that are used or purchased by multiple members of a household. In these cases, the group of individuals within the household become the target unit.

Granted, any given product may have one final purchaser in the household. Nevertheless, influencing others within the household unit that it’s time to reconsider their air fresheners, replace an old sofa, or otherwise improve a communal experience is a brilliant tactic for getting that household to sway in the direction of a purchase.

To make the connection between individuals and households, eMarketer reports there are “a growing number of marketers rolling individual-level insights up to the household level.” Simply put, anonymized device data is mapped to determine household members.

From there, advertisers leverage a blended targeting strategy. Shared devices, such as connected televisions, are targeted with creative that has a broader appeal, thus priming the household unit to consider the brand or product. Personal devices, such as mobile phones, are then targeted to those most likely to drive the conversion.

As brilliant as this sounds, there’s a key aspect integral to success that’s no simple feat: accurately mapping all that data while respecting user privacy.

While ad serving platforms that have truly robust AIs with advanced contextual targeting capabilities are capable of this blended targeting approach, other platforms are struggling to find solutions that are both accurate and respectful of user privacy concerns and laws.

Indeed, many archaic solutions dependent on personally identifiable information and third party data agreements were sent back to the drawing board when GDPR went into effect.

So what can marketers do?

Simply put, marketers need to take a hard look at who they’re working with and demand solutions that leverage contextual targeting and are GDPR compliant by design, all while enabling full cross-device measurement capabilities.

While this may seem like a tall request for some, all marketers — not just those representing the Fortune 500 — deserve contextual, cross-device capabilities as a baseline.

Join the Conversation
How do you employ blended targeting in your campaigns to drive household consensus around a purchase? How has GDPR affected these efforts, and what results have you seen? Let us know by joining the conversation on Twitter, LinkedIn, or Facebook.

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