Which image would appeal to you most in a video advertisement for a holiday: a skydive, a fancy restaurant or the view of giraffes? Your colleague, on reading this question, might well make a different choice. But this principle is not generally used in advertising. Which surprises me, because we have the technology to show specific advertising messages to different target groups. Unfortunately, we miss out on great opportunities for optimal use of this technology to improve the performance of advertising and to get added value for the consumer.
Marketing professionals can be regarded as one target group, as we are all interested in media and marketing. Most of us are probably in the same age group and the majority lives in cities.
Yet the group is not a homogeneous group. We have our own interests, our stages of life vary and we are touched by other images.
The great promise of online advertising is: the right person, the right time, the right message. Media is purchased on the basis of target groups, and programmatic even allows us to reach individual profiles at exact times. Yet, for the most part consumers are served the same generic expressions, especially when it comes to video, which is now the most popular (display) advertisement format.
The challenge lies in creating the right message. Due to high costs for the creation of advertisements one idea is often taken as starting and end point, without using any data we have of the specific target group. As a result, ads are often generic.
When making video advertisements dynamic by means of automation, variants can be generated through changing images, storylines, titles and voice-overs, so that they are geared to the different segments within the target group.
Benefits are obvious: video advertisements become more relevant, the marketing material can be used in changing compositions and has a longer lifespan. For example, retailers can use national campaigns to refer to local branches, travel organisations simply show their entire range and provide current offers. Financial institutions and telcos can focus on specific offers per customer group and global brands can easily locate their content for all markets in which they operate.
The time has come to let data do it’s work when we create. The relevance increases, makes the process scalable, and significantly improve ROI. Not only pleasant for the advertiser, but essential too. The online advertising market is under pressure since the arrival of Ad blockers and GDPR. We need to earn permission for the use of data by making advertisements relevant. This is possible when agencies and marketers make maximum use of the data they have. It will lead to optimisation of media purchasing, as well as communication of specific messages to the target groups that have been built up carefully. The technology is available. Now it is the advertisers’ and agencies’ turn to include dynamic creatives in their approach.
Maarten Boon is CEO & Founder with adtech startup We adapt.