Personalization is eating the online marketing world.
There is a buzzword for 2013 Marketing and it’s “Personalization”. We already have it quite heavily in 2012, but it’s going to get even more intense in 2013.
Google’s natural results are already personalized based upon geographical location, search history and who you follow on Google Plus. In addition to that, depending on how Google sees the intent of your search query, Google will show a “special” mix of universal search results that could include videos, pictures, news snippets, or local business listings.
Google personalizes paid search results as well. If you do a series of queries, Google will customize the paid results you see based upon the relationships of the queries to each other. For example, if you do a search for “shoes” and then a search for “pants”, the search for “pants” could pull in elements of the “shoes” search and the paid ads shown might reflect a mix of “shoes” ads and “pants” ads.
Where the personalization gets really interesting though is in the many layers of retargeting that can influence what is seen as you surf the web. Once someone lands on a site that contains retargeting pixel(s), the fun really begins…
There’s the basic Google Retargeting that you probably already know about…where an advertiser can show either text or display ads in the Google Content Network. These ads can appear on any website running Google AdSense, or can be seen in RSS Feeds.
Google also offers “Search Retargeting”, allowing advertisers to retarget within Google’s Search Network. In Search Retargeting Campaigns, advertisers can bid upon a much broader range of queries to reacquire an audience that already has been to their site and the results can be extremely effective.
Google isn’t the only company that offers retargeting…other providers do as well. Each has their own networks that may or may not overlap with Google’s, meaning that retargeting can be furthered by using additional vendors.
What’s really exciting for advertisers is that Facebook also has its own display / retargeting offering. Advertisers who place the Facebook Exchange Cookie on their website can show Facebook ads to their retargeting audience within Facebook without being a “regular” Facebook advertiser. Many don’t realize how prevalent these Facebook Exchange ads have become and they’re showing tremendous ROI for advertisers.
Traditional “Display Advertising” has always been around but with the advancements in targeting and segmentation, it has evolved into an extremely relevant way to reach audiences. Display networks are too vast to ignore and the search marketer who is only using Google for Display Advertising is doing a huge disservice to their clients.
The strongest “movement” I expect to see in 2013 is the fusing of Paid Search and Display Advertising. Non-Google Display advertising is massively huge and totally relevant…yet few PPC professionals have any real understanding of it. It’s true that the mechanics of managing Display are very different from paid search. However, PPC managers will need a fundamental understanding of how paid search and display work together in order to effectively do their jobs.
In 2013, people will finally realize that while Google and AdCenter are huge, important advertising networks for business, they are only gateways to paid online marketing…they are not the whole show. Comprehensive online paid advertising must include all relevant Internet Inventory which necessitates going beyond the search engines. Search Advertising, Retargeting & Display Advertising all must work together seamlessly and the smartest companies are using DSP’s to monitor and control the various advertising networks in which they participate.