I’ve noticed lately that a few of my favorite brands seem to be following me around.
I clicked through an opt-in email from Ford, which led me to its website. While there I looked at the social badges and explored the 2013 Mustang. Then, during my next visit to Facebook there was an ad for the Mustang. On another occasion I visited Livestrong to track my fitness and was served an ad for clothing retailer White House|Black Market (I’m a member of its loyalty program and liked it on Facebook). Is it coincidence? I think not. I think it’s behavioral targeting.
Although some consumers find this creepy, I find it fascinating–and effective if done well. Years ago I saw a speaker who explained the importance of frequency in terms of branding like this: If you use a hammer to hit a nail into a wood plank one time, it’s easy to pull out the nail. Strike the nail with the hammer multiple times and, voila, the nail becomes secured into the plank. Show an ad once and it will get lost in the digital morass. Show it several times and the brand starts to get sticky.
It’s the same with behavioral targeting. You know me. You know I like your brand. So send me an email, show up on Facebook, serve up an ad on Livestrong. Be where I am. Remind me why I like you. Even if I don’t click through, get me to think of you now so when I am ready to buy, you’re top of mind.
Ginger Conlon is the Editor-in-Chief of the 1to1 Media Group which is a division of the Peppers & Rogers Group.