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Is targeting third-party data more effective than contextual targeting?

Can contextual targeting be targeted to work as well as targeting by interest or occupation?

This question has become very relevant these days, in light of the requirements for consent and other limitations around personal and third-party data.

To help answer this question, two London-based companies – the online performance-based agency Roast and the advertising platform Teads – have decided to conduct a test, presented in a recently published white paper : "The sustainable effectiveness of contextual targeting". [free, email required]. Roast's head, Lucy Cunningham, co-author of the mobile exhibition and paper, told me that, to his knowledge, this is the first test of its kind.

The word "enduring" in the title of the article addresses the fact that classic modern advertising, as in the television and print days of the television series "Mad Men", was fundamentally contextual. Advertisers bought advertisements on, for example, sporting events to reach men and soap operas to reach women.

This contrasts with the data-driven approach of today's digital marketing, where advertisers often post advertisements for website or app visitors whose cookie-based profiles indicate, say, that It is about women aged 18 to 34 years old. For many ads, the content in which the ad is shown is a way to attract this type of users, but often it does not determine which ad is showing.

But does one work better than the other? If this is not the case, contextual ads comply with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) because they do not require personal data. They could be cheaper to manage because the advertiser would not have to buy third-party data or request and track consent permissions, or rely on ultra-fast programmatic platforms to recognize the right type of visitor and serve this ad immediately.

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[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

About the author

Barry Levine covers marketing technology for Third Door Media. Previously, he covered this space as a senior writer for VentureBeat, and he has written on these topics and other technologies for publications such as CMSWire and NewsFactor. He founded and directed the website / unit at PBS Thirteen / WNET; worked as a senior online producer / screenwriter for Viacom; created a successful interactive game, PLAY IT BY EAR: the first CD game; founded and directed an independent cinema showcase, CENTER SCREEN, based at Harvard and M.I.T .; and served more than five years as a consultant to the M.I.T. Media Lab. You can find it on LinkedIn, and on Twitter at xBarryLevine.