December 24, 2011

The research gold mine of online display

There are two flavors of online marketing: search and display.

Are you a brand owner who embraces search but ignores display? Your I-don’t-click-on-display-ads-so-nobody-does theory needs a rethink. You’re missing out on a feedback loop of information about the demographics and psychographics of your best prospects. Place ads on different networks, put visual stimulus in front of various segments, get actionable insights. If your campaign is even close to breakeven, you’re way ahead. Improve targeting continually – even shape offline media to build e-commerce traffic.

The system is, as they say, heuristic. You learn, refine, watch the dashboard in real time, learn some more. Keep your eye on the ROI. Sure, there’s lots to learn from pay-per-click search, but there’s also a gold mine in display. It’s the difference between “headline A beat headline B by 22%” and “headline A beat headline B with mom-bloggers and women of Asian descent, especially on weekends.” Search helps you learn how many – display helps you learn why.