What can programmatic campaigns tell you about your audience?

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Emma Ashby is head of display at Epiphany

Programmatic may be one of the marketing industry’s buzzwords of the moment, but the added value that intelligent programmatic campaigns can provide marketers is, surprisingly, often overlooked.

Programmatic campaigns generate a wealth of hugely valuable data, providing marketers with powerful insights into the behaviour of their audience. This data can then be used to fuel marketing campaigns on other channels and devices, and even target completely new audiences.

Real-time information on who is visiting a site and converting can be combined with other available data sets to build up a better understanding of a brand’s customers. This then allows for more advanced segmentation and personalisation of marketing campaigns.

More granular site information can take this a step further. Take the travel sector for example; analysts can compare audience attributes based on the type of holiday, destination, and departure airport they choose, with their lead time between research and booking. Using this data, analysts can then create tailored campaigns with enhanced targeting and more personalised messaging – targeting users at the optimum time and in the right context.

Similarly, there’s scope to identify additional attributes based on site purchase behaviours or type of payment. Customers paying for a holiday immediately versus those opting for interest free credit can be targeted separately allowing display campaigns to be more efficient at finding a greater number of higher value customers.

Keeping it real

For our clients, we provide real-time insight dashboards allowing our planners or the client’s marketing team to access audience data at any time. This extensive information on an audience includes device, location, time of day/day of the week, sites visited, demographics, interest categories and much, much more.

It can also pull in other channels such as PPC to profile any differences between the two audiences and activate bidding and ad messaging based on real-time insights.

Real-world data can also be used to increase the impact of campaigns. Metrics such as weather, financial markets, competitor advertising, social sentiment can all be used to activate bids or tailor messaging.

One step further is to apply a brand’s own CRM data and purchase history to campaigns, which opens up a rich set of data that can be used to increase efficiency, upsell complementary products or services, and to understand the previous history of a user before they are served an ad.

With ever more data available, programmatic campaigns can be the starting point for marketers to connect data sets together to create a single view, which will not only maximise their digital marketing activity but improve wider customer understanding across the business. This is going to become increasingly important as more channels move towards a programmatic format of ad buying.

Emma Ashby is head of display at Epiphany.

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