Relevant ads for everyone are a double winner: they brings pros to both the consumers and the brand.
Distributing a relevant piece of information to the right person at the right time means the user is more likely to discover that they are interested in something they perhaps hadn’t thought of before- it widens their horizons. At the same time the brand has a higher chance of making a sale.
What is contextual advertising? Contextual advertising (also known as contextual marketing) is a form of targeted advertising, generally appearing on websites and in apps.
Different data for different brands Various elements can be considered for contextual advertising. Different brands will be interested in different data: for instance, location could make all the difference for a hotel or restaurant. • Language • Location • Weather • Time of day • Device • Preferred channel • Past behaviour • Purchase history
Even holding the above information, brands cannot be as accurate as they would like to be in how they organise their marketing strategy. In fact, it doesn’t help that users carry out a lot of their research outside of the brand’s area of impact. So, though traditional marketing campaigns are still vitally important, the other aspects of this journey give brands an opportunity to continue to have a powerful input.
What are the obstacles to contextual marketing? 1) The first obstacle to employing targeted ads is a lack of usable data. While we live in an age of big data, problems exist in utilising it in order to find out relevant information. 2) Technology: Connecting different data sets is partly a problem with existing technology.
Solution: “acting with context” By employing information regarding sales, CRM data, web data, reviews & feedback, and social data, you can build up a picture that will carry your campaign forward for any brand. For example, if you are going to target a particular profession on LinkedIn, your “profile” for that sector can provide information on how best to connect with that segment.
Personalisation, in the form of digital voice assistants, is considered the future of contextual advertising.
These forms of “communication” allow users to search for things they are interested in with their voice, without consulting a screen as they would have done in the past. As AI, artificial intelligence, becomes increasingly accessible to consumers technology seeks to become a more integral part of our lives and not a “separate” entity that we physically consult. This switch to less device heavy marketing will constitute a monumental shift in advertising. AI is now storing incredible amounts of data that is being integrated more and more with consumer technology, especially voice assistants. The information that has been accumulated for years is now being utilised in the consumer’s present day.
Contextualisation is already built on the premise that proposing ads that are relevant are more welcome and unobtrusive, which means that on any given platform you will most likely only see what is relevant to you as a consumer. So personalisation must follow this example in order to create the story telling environment that is so crucial in order to generate respect for a brand. No one wants to see an add for their favourite shoe brand, however loved (!), when they are viewing a page on a piece of news that is communicating the latest on a natural disaster, for instance.
Personalisation must go hand in hand with contextualisation, in this sense, in order to be credible and trustworthy. Knowing when and where is appropriate to provide the customer with knowledge about those new shoes is key to the ad’s success.
“When you keep seeing adverts on the latest BMW but can’t drive, it has no relevance and as a consumer it’s a waste of time that can be disruptive” says Co-founder of Vertis Media, Laura Cioffi.
In contextual advertising the ads themselves occur based on the identity of the user and the content displayed and…it’s on the up, as users want the least level of interruption during their time browsing.
Read on if you are interested in know our top 10 facts and trends about contextual advertising.
1.Advances in Matching up relevant data to customers- AI in advertising The algorithms used are under constant development in order to improve how accurately ads match the user’s preferences. These past few years have seen a huge leap in targeted advertising, where the message is made to “adapt” to the viewer. The quest for advertisers, for a long time now, has been to make sure that the information they are putting out there is really relevant. Artificial intelligence is a way of doing this: it gets rid of the detective work in targeted advertising. With the ability to dip into a pool of relevant information regarding its users, advertisers can make sure that “useless” information, that can go against a brand’s positioning, gets stopped in its tracks. This means two very important things for Vertis Media‘s dedication to storytelling: relevance and cost effectiveness.
2.Content continues to reign When engaging with a brand, users have come to expect a wealth of information on more fronts: videos, social media posts, blogs and other types of authentic content. Everyone has caught on to this “trend” which means that in order to stand out, content has had to be more and more interesting. AI can contribute to building a better content strategy. By “improving” the target audiences, businesses can more effectively narrow down the focus of their stories, blog posts, videos and other content pieces to engage their users more effectively.
3.GDPR The “right to be forgotten” that GDPR now implies means that businesses can no longer collect information about people without their consent. Explicit consent. Personalised data is essentially the heart of a targeted ad campaign, so what to do? The correct answer is contextual advertising! How? By finding out the characteristics of a target audience based on the web pages visited. General data about the interests of visitors to that page provides the context needed of how to make information attractive to those users.
4.Video, video & more video Video is becoming the most important advertising channel and this is set to rise in the future. And what better way to involve audiences than to enable them to participate in creating those videos. The creativity of recent generations could take brands far by getting them on board with the creative process of sharing information.
5.Smart TVs As consumers are moving away from linear TV and toward a type of smart TV viewing, advertisers will also, aligning themselves with the new on demand viewing experiences.
6.“Voice” 2019 is likely to see brands that will allow for organic use of the devices, with ads that direct consumers to specific products or services. To reach audiences, brands are using new and innovative ways to get the message across.
7.Personalisation & Contextual Advertising Ways are being found to ensure the messages displayed to the users are “tailormade”. Ads in the future will also be able to gather the info necessary to provide the user with options that are relevant through personalisation.
8.“Billboard targeting” & Contextual Advertising Businesses are planning to give their billboards “eyes” that can scan peoples’ faces who are passing by. The software will be able to pick up on the number of people who go past and the length of time they looked at it. For the past few years, Google has been testing programmatic ad technology, normally in use for the web, for billboards. Google’s access to extensive information on mobile location data means it can target digital billboards in ways that competitors like Facebook can’t.
9.Customer participation & Contextual Advertising User generated media will be used through audience participation. Companies will aim to gain more information from their users in order to involve them. In this way, consumers will be interested in those messages that are more relevant to them.
10.Mobile Augmented Reality (AR) Mobile AR saw a leap from 100 million to 250 million users. A BRP report showed that 48% of consumers were more likely to buy products from retailers that were also providers of AR experiences.
Ads that appear on websites that are directly relevant to what the user is viewing are contextual. They are ads that positioned at the right place and the right time.
What is Contextual Advertising?
If you are viewing a recipe that involves the use of a particular kitchen utensil or brand of food for instance, you will have the opportunity to be presented with an advert for something useful in that context. The idea here is that people who are browsing gluten free food recipes are more likely to appreciate an ad for gluten free pasta than a car ad at that moment. A more captivated consumer usually means more conversions, so contextual advertising is a great way to improve the performance of your display ads.
With the correct targeting, contextual advertising can help you to improve the placement of ads. In order to employ contextual advertising in the right way, you’ll create extremely specific ads for very specific keyword groups or site pages.
Vertis Media shows ads to users who are browsing on sites that are directly relevant to a product or service, and it follows that the audience will probably be more receptive to it.
No-one is denying that paid advertising on platforms such as Facebook or Google, for instance, can be effective as part of a wider media campaign. But, if what you are aiming for is to actually get results in how a brand is perceived, what you need is a native contextual campaign strategy.
Social Ads vs Contextual Advertising
So, what is the difference between advertising solely on social media and contextual advertising more generally?
Both cases require a financial commitment, however these two different modes of advertising couldn’t be more different in the results they obtain. It’s all a question of, what Vertis Media defines as, tuning into the “user mindset”, capturing your ideal customers when they are fully engaged in relevant content.
Advertising on social media appears to offer more control over what is said about a brand but is actually giving less power over content positioning. When and where an advert appears is just as important as what appears. If the only time your advert comes up is on social media then your targeted user’s mindset is probably not tuned in to what your goals are at those moments in time. The reason they are on social media is probably to check out what their friends are doing or look at cute dog pics. If, on the other hand, they are online already engaging in content that has links and shares relevance with your brand then it will be more effective because they will be of more interest at that moment in time- they will have the right mindset to embrace and welcome the information you are providing.
The real impact of Contextual Advertising
Contextual advertising also offers the greatest variety in terms of formats by including microsites, infographics, videos, web series, blog style articles written in first person or traditional articles, interviews and much more. It tells a larger story where brands play a contextual role that involves a client passing on some control to the publisher purely because a publisher can more readily contribute to creating content that blends seamlessly within the publishing platform’s environment. The end result is contextual and impactful content, and the start of new modalities in terms of formats to play with that capture users when they are in the right frame of mind.