How to Use Layered Data, Targeted Content, and Powerful Platforms to Bank Better Brand Currency

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Written by Digital Surgeons,
• 6 min read

If consumer attention is currency in this fragmented media system, then it’s time to discover the best way to cash in for your brand.

Gone are the days of spray & pray campaigns and educated guesswork. Now, we can leverage limitless data sources and new ad technologies to connect with exactly the right consumers for long enough to make an impression — and you always want to make an impression.

How do we enable this more personalized and relevant experience for consumers? We dig deep into the data and work together: No longer should creative teams or media minds lead the campaign process alone. Creative teams and media minds must come together in a united team effort, spearheaded by rich data and consumer context.  

This people-first approach captures attention, and in turn, increases the lifetime value of the consumer.

Here are the three steps Digital Surgeons uses to knock personalized campaigns out of the park:

1) Layer Data, Save Money

We all-too-often receive the direction that we need to target “Millennials” – a demographic cohort that spans roughly sixteen years. Sixteen years!

Targeting based on these parameters alone is like shooting in the dark, because we know that a 31-year old female professional has different habits, values, and triggers than say, an 18-year old male high school graduate. Not to mention, these individual habits, values, and triggers are varied and fluid. So why would we address all millennials in the same context with the same messaging? No reason to do so – it wastes your time and your money. To avoid treating every customer the same, and effectively capture the attention of these complex audience groups, we need to understand both the individual consumers, and the consumer context of their individual purchase journeys.

I’ll illustrate using the millennial closest to me: Me! I’m an online shoe shopping, health and fitness fanatic who doesn’t have any children. But, I do have five nieces and nephews, so every year around the holidays I purchase kids apparel and toys. Does this mean I want to be served ads for children’s toys every time I’m online, all year round? Not in the least.

Sophisticated marketers will pick up on the complex data signals my online behavior sends, so they can identify when I’m being “Super Aunt,” vs. when I’m in shoe shopping or fitness fanatic mode. Because “Super Aunt” is the only context I want to see ads for kids toys in, any impression outside of this particular context of online purchasing behaviour is wasted, as it doesn’t earn any attention from me.

In order to earn attention, a brand needs to know what micro-communities their targets belong to, their core purchasing values, and the complex context of their individual purchase journey. To achieve this, before any campaign strategy is created, we delve into a deep discovery using various site analytics, third party studies, and social media listening tools to gain a full picture of who the exact target audiences are. Once we identify these target audiences we layer First, Second, and Third party data to create custom data-driven audience segments. This ensures we’re speaking the “right language” to each individual consumer in the right context.

By leveraging this data, we can minimize waste, save money, and make that impression.

2) Create More Content

To gain this valuable attention currency for a brand, we’ll need an equal opportunity, all-hands-on-deck approach. So, I propose that the money saved by using this data-driven targeting should be re-allocated to Creative.

Yes, you read that right. I’m a media strategist and I just said to give Creative more money.  But, I also said we need to work together, so let me explain.

While this allocation may limit the upfront “working dollars” for Media, if the messaging isn’t right, the media dollars aren’t working anyhow – just like in my Super Aunt example above. This is why I say content is the main intersection for creative and media. We work together to create the right creative content for the right consumer in the right context.

At Digital Surgeons, we have a silo-free organization, meaning our Strategy, Media, Data / Analytics, and Creative talents work collaboratively in order to get the right message to the right person. Because, if we don’t have the relevant creative for the right stage of the purchase journey, our varied millennial consumers are going to swipe left and carry on with their days without any currency banked for you.

So, for every media platform, multiple pieces of creative need to be developed in formats that your various micro-communities consume. This means the same product can be marketed to unique consumers with unique attention triggers across platforms unique to them.

This content-focused, consumer-forward, hyper-targeted approach means you’re sure to get all (relevant) eyes on a brand.

3) Use a DMP (Data Management Platform)

By now, you probably agree it is important that Creative and Media teams working together to create highly contextual content for just the right audience, but you might ask, how do we execute such a complex undertaking?

Well, I’m ready to divulge the secret ingredient! There is no better tool than a Data Management Platform. In the right hands, DMPs are the most powerful marketing and ad-tech the industry has to date.

DMPs allow us to collect all of a brand’s first-party data, organize it, analyze it, and then execute highly targeted campaigns accurately from the funneled findings.

These platforms, like our in-house Adobe DMP, merge data from paid and owned consumer touch-points – online and offline. This means that data from a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) database, in-store purchasing records, social media engagement, and site visitation histories can all be analyzed in one platform, linked to a singular customer profile, and then segmented into the appropriate groupings. This level of complex data mining and utilization ensures we never cross our wires when it comes to sophisticated millennials (or any other) targeting. Certainly not shooting in the dark, is it?

Our DMP is the tool that ties our collaborative data-driven and content-focused quest together for the most relevant attention-currency out there.


Contact us and learn more about how we can use our DMP technology, cognitive insights, and sophisticated analytics to drive much-needed attention and results for your business or brand.