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The subtle way advertisers target the public – and why they should not

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At the beginning of the advertisement, the goal was to seduce most people. With the right frequency and the right message, advertisers thought that a brand would stay in the public consciousness, possibly pushing them to act as a purchase, and ideally become a customer or subscriber for life. As advertising capabilities evolved, marketing teams sought to segment audiences and reduce unnecessary impressions by targeting specific groups with specific messages.

Targeting started in simpler forms. For example, a car manufacturer aired a family car advertisement during soap operas and a sports car during late-night television. In the 1960s, more and more brands were asking advertising agencies to target minority groups, which was previously rare.

To do this, agencies tested new creative tools to learn what resonated with specific ethnic groups, basing their strategies on Burrell's method through ethnic micro-targeting. It ranged from Lorillard's campaign for Kool Menthol Cigarettes that targeted African Americans and featured African American models at the 1990 McDonald's pub that explicitly targeted African Americans from inner city neighborhoods.

[Read the full article on MarTech Today.]

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Marketing Land. The authors of the staff are listed here.

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About the author

Mark Williams is Senior Director, Media Operations at Fullscreen. Mark combines a love of cinema and art with over 10 years in internet marketing and tech. He began his professional career in Los Angeles working on independent television and movies. This experience has sparked interest in online entertainment marketing. Prior to joining Fullscreen, he was SEM Senior Manager for Demand Media, and previously worked at to manage AdWords and MSN AdCenter campaigns. Mark is a seasoned pay-per-click specialist who has managed more than $ 150 million of search engine advertising in AdWords, Yahoo! and Bing.

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