Location is the Drug and Advertisers are Hooked

Understanding where consumers have been, where they are going or what locations they are near is one of the strongest signals that exists in digital targeting. But it wasn’t until mobile entered the programmatic space that the true value and supply of location signals reached scale and maturity. But what does this actually mean and why does it account for 40% of the average mobile advertising spend?

Location was introduced to content and service companies to provide a better customer experience and more relevant information. For some industries, next to an actual purchase, location data is one of the most significant data signals that can be used to measure intent and opportunity, which is what marketers are constantly striving for.

There are two common ways to use location targeting today in mobile.
Proximity: The device is currently located somewhere close to the point of interest
Behavioral Location: The device was associated with a location, based on lat/long data and has an inferred relationship with that location historically

Most marketers prefer proximity targeting based on the assumptions that they can inspire consumers to make a purchase when they are nearby. However, the general market research behind this is flawed, suggesting most consumers have already determined preference before arriving and if they are to be persuaded otherwise, it is usually by price at the point of purchase or shelf. Not small banner ads on phones. Historical behavior is one of the strongest indicators of future behavior and offers marketers significantly more scale and benefit.

So how do you know which option is right for your campaign? Our advice is to allocate 70% of a location buy to behavioral location and 30% to proximity for the best results. Just ensure your creative reflects these tactics. For example, if you are running a proximity campaign you may want your creative to leverage things like maps or dynamically include distance from point of interest to push a visit. Whereas with behavioral location, the creative can be more broad in the appeal with general brand awareness messaging to reinforce brand and drive consideration.

We understand that every campaign has different KPIs and different goals. Leveraging location data will impact your targeting decisions and you need to be very clear when deciding to use location based targeting and confident it addresses your KPIs. Keeping these simple tips in mind can positively impact your campaign from start to finish.

Want to learn more about location based targeting technology? Check out our one-on-one Q&A session where we discuss beacon and GPS technology from a mobile POV.