When it comes to digital media planning and strategy, it’s easy to get absorbed by a channel-driven approach. For example, many marketers understand that Connected TV serves as a strong upper funnel tactic for incremental reach, that social yields engagement making it a good fit for the middle funnel and that display retargeting will drive more bottom funnel goals. However, this causes campaigns to quickly turn from strategic to tactical, causing an overall disconnect. Instead, marketers should leverage an audience-first approach that first determines who their most valuable customers are, where they are most likely to interact online, and how we can best reach them through an omni-channel strategy.
What is an Audience-First Approach?
At the end of the day, increased brand awareness, consideration and sales all come down to one thing: customers. Without them, brands aren’t able to achieve their business objectives. Therefore, we believe that digital media strategies need to place audiences at the cornerstone of their planning.
Once the target audiences are identified through industry and vertical research, evaluation of personas and analysis of current customers, operations teams are able to use data sets (1st, 2nd and 3rd party audiences) available across the various platforms to reach their audiences, only selecting to activate on channels where these audiences are known to engage and available to target. This approach provides meaning to why specific channels are selected over others and ensures that the strategy is based on how the brand can best achieve their goals.
But perhaps most importantly, the focus should be on reaching people, not devices.
As we are beginning to be confronted with the realities of a cookie-less world, we can be confident that we will continue to be able to deliver robust targeting strategies through:
- Mobile ID matching
- 1st party data/CRM and lookalike modeling
- 2nd party data
- Keyword targeting
- Category/contextual targeting
- Deterministic 3rd party segments based on PII