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Ad Targeting in the Era of Data Privacy

Minute Read
April 7, 2021
January 10, 2024

Consumer data has been widely used by advertisers, but new limitations are threatening that. Learn how to adapt to increased data privacy.

One of the most pressing issues for today’s advertisers are the new limitations instituted by Apple, and the coming changes by Google that restrict data sharing. These changes are already having a material impact on ad targeting within Facebook. Rest assured, there are things you can do in the shorter term and long term to adapt to the new reality of increased data privacy.

Simply put, consumer data has been used (and sometimes abused) by many advertising organizations. The changes we are seeing today have been the culmination of years of largely unregulated data privacy. While data based targeting has been the underpinning of many successful Facebook campaigns, there are alternatives.

First off, advertising comes down to three key metrics.  

  1. Your ability to consistently reach your target customer
  2. The cost per impression to reach that customer
  3. How compelling your message is to that customer

To start, it's important to establish a baseline. Look at your Google Analytics and look at how much new web traffic has originated from Facebook. There have been numerous reports where Facebook has not been accurately reporting advertising data so do not just rely on what they provide. Whether it’s the recent articles about Facebook inflating reach numbers, advertisers unable to reconcile Facebook clicks vs landing page views in their Google Analytics, or other data based issues, there have been significant questions on the true metrics of a Facebook campaign. Candidly, the reason we do not offer Facebook advertising at Awarity is that we’ve been unable to reconcile metrics to our satisfaction. We have even pulled back our own ad spend within Facebook as a result. When you see how many new website visitors you’re obtaining from Facebook, you have a benchmark to work against. And when you reconcile that vs your spend, you will have a target cost per new customer visit to your website.  

Secondly, other channels offer opportunities to reach the same customers, with lower costs, and without using audience data. At Awarity, we have developed an approach we call “Intelligent Targeting” where we can reach specific customer segments through a wide-ranging suite of options, none of which rely on audience data. If you want to reach business owners – we can do that. If you want to reach women in households over $100,000, we can do that too. We are always happy to talk through a campaign approach to ensure we’re serving a compelling ad message to your target customer and you will see this new traffic in your Google Analytics dashboard so you can verify what we’re reporting.

Finally, remember, a successful advertising campaign relies on 3-4 different channels, all pushing a similar message. You may not find a single channel to replace your prior campaigns, but a combination of a few different channels may give you multiple ways to reach that same customer. The more quickly organizations adapt to the new reality, the less likely they are to see a disruptive effect on their business.

About the Author

I've worked at Fortune 500 corporations like PepsiCo and Capital One, but also with several small businesses. Wherever I was, one truth stood out: The marketing and advertising industry is built around large corporations, leaving limited solutions for small business. But with changes in consumer behavior, and the explosive growth of digital advertising, we saw an opportunity to level the playing field.

We’re always available to talk about an approach to meet your goals and reach the types of new customers you desire. Just schedule time through our website, or you can always request a free proposal. We pride ourselves on offering high impact advertising at the most affordable price in the industry to help you engage with new customers, which is more important now than it’s ever been before.

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