Audience Targeting Goes Mobile

This article is part of the Digiday Partner Program and is made possible by data and analytics provider Exelate. Join Exelate at 2 p.m. on May 10, when they’ll explore the full survey findings during this free webinar. Registration is complimentary, but space is limited.


Marketers are refocusing in order to find the right audiences on mobile media, so much so that their use of audience-targeting services is nearing desktop levels, according to Digiday’s most recent State of the Industry Survey.

“Multiplatform audience targeting is quickly becoming the new norm as consumers use digital media across screens throughout the day,” said Khurrum Malik, CMO of Exelate, which sponsored the survey.

More than 50 percent of about 700 digital media executives who responded said they have expanded their audience-finding techniques to smartphones and tablets, perhaps giving credence to the oft-voiced prediction that 2013 would be the year of mobile.

Malik presented his findings at the Digiday Brand Summit in Miami, Fla. this week. He added that he was surprised to see that audience targeting on mobile devices was quickly reaching desktop levels.

Overall, nearly 70 percent of all three buy-side sectors plan to increase their audience-targeting budgets in the coming year, at an average growth rate of 38 percent.

In fact, budgets have already jumped between Q3 2012 and Q1 2013. In that time, digital agencies’ use of audience targeting has jumped 5 percent to reach 94 percent. Both advertisers and network/exchange/DSP use of the technique grew 3 percent to 83 percent and 91 percent respectively.

Despite these bumps, Malik added, “Advertisers are just scratching the surface on advanced audience targeting where they can use third-party online data with first-party CRM data to drive scale and speed for their customer acquisition campaigns.”

About 83 percent of advertisers use audience targeting themselves, with 80 percent reporting it to be an effective marketing tool. Still, Malik said, advertisers lean on their shops to find the right consumers.

“Some advertisers have a fantastic relationship with their agencies,” he said. “They should not focus on catching up; instead, they should be thinking about how can they work more closely with their agency to execute audience targeting.”

The others should “consider launching quick pilots to test their own ability to execute audience targeting directly and compare their results to outside parties.”

Advertisers looking to emulate their peers should note that third-party online data was the highest ranked data set for both direct-response and branding campaigns among advertisers and agencies that participated in the survey.

The full presentation deck is available here. A complete video of Exelate’s State of the Industry presentation at Digiday Brand Summit is available for viewing here.

Join Exelate for a full exploration of these findings at 2 p.m. on May 10 by registering for this free webinar. Registration is complimentary, but space is limited.

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