Does The Internet Listen to Your Conversations?
Is the Internet Actually Listening to You? (Or is it Effective Ad Targeting?)
“Is my phone listening to my everyday conversations??
We’ve all thought this at one point or another… right? (Psh, maybe in the last day.)
It seems so likely when you get that perfectly targeted advertisement about dog walking, right after you told your friend you need a new dog walker. Could it be that someone heard you and sent that info to the local dog walker?
Well, no. In fact, that would actually be a simpler explanation than what is really happening with those ad pop-ups.
Let’s take a deeper look into how ad targeting works, and why it can sometimes seem like the internet is listening. Then, we’ll go into a few tips for how to get your own ad targeting on point!
The internet isn’t listening…but it IS paying attention.
Here’s the honest truth about online data – the internet doesn’t HAVE to listen to your conversations to get the info it needs.
There’s a very good chance that you are giving the internet everything it needs to serve you super specific targeted ads. Sure, some things we put online on purpose, but the majority of it is behind the scenes. Think about all of the different apps and websites you are connected to or visit throughout the day. It’s probably more than you can even count in your head!
Every single social media “like” or website click is offering data about your wants and needs throughout the day. And the internet is very, very good at paying attention to and remembering those wants and needs.
Technology is getting better and better.
Artificial intelligence, third-party sites (like Google and Facebook), and algorithms work together when it comes to effective targeting.
Plus, technology is only getting more and more stealthy at accessing your online information. Things like search history, in-app interactions, past purchases, online profiles, and website clicks go into AI’s ability to seemingly know what you’re looking for. The data is already there to create those perfectly targeted ads, just for you.
So, how can your business target more effectively?
Here are a few tips to narrow down your own targeting strategies to help your business show up to the right people.
- Pay close attention to your website and social media analytics: These will show you exactly who’s interested in what through clicks, likes, views, etc.
- Analyze the market with the extensive tools available online: Search for trends in demographics and notice what tactics other businesses are using. Google Trends is a good starting point, but there are plenty of useful tools out there.
- Test, test, and test again!: You can segment your audience into specific groups and get more detailed each time you test segments with different campaigns. Being able to narrow down your target with testing is how you get to that “how did they even know I was looking for this?” response.
If you’re looking to level up your advertising strategies, check out our other awesome resources here!