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Making ads count on the internet

Demand side platforms allows advertisers to target users more accurately

Gulf News

When browsing the internet we all build our own, more or less, anonymous profile on the web. Websites we visit store information about the content we consume which allows advertisers to target users more accurately than ever before.

The availability of this data has led to the rise of demand side platforms (DSP), which connects advertising inventory from multiple sources based on user information and data collected by browsing the internet in a single management interface. These platforms allow advertisers to buy ads for the best price based on bidding and detailed targeting.

This means a shift in media buying as more and more advertising can be placed based on users’ interest, context and behaviour as opposed to conventional media planning.

In the past most media was placed using direct placements on web properties. This means if a brand wants to target a specific audience the media planner selects a list of websites that are visited by the audience and buys advertising space.

Due to the increased availability of semantic web data and tools that can analyse web content, combined with user behaviour tracking and profile building banners are now placed based on the users profile data when and as needed.

This means instead of buying media on a specific site the advertising will be placed on any site the user we are trying to target is browsing.

In detail this means advertising can be placed based on the web page context, but ads can also be shown based on users’ past browsing behaviour, such as remarketing campaigns.

Remarketing campaigns allows the advertiser to show banners to users that have visited a certain website. You can track these users and show them banners of your product on other sites they visit. The result is a higher return on investment on the advertising budget.

Location also becomes less important and because the web is global a company from the UAE as an example can target UAE internet users while they are browsing content from any other country. This makes it even more attractive due to the comparably low local offering in terms of content and impressions when compared to a global internet scale.

In general, advertising is no longer bound to a specific property, but to the user and the context they are in. This makes online advertising more powerful than any other form of advertising.

With the rise of DSPs this process becomes easier to manage and gives advertisers real time access to data that shows which websites they should advertise on in order to reach users with a certain persona. It’s all about data collection of content and users while they browse the internet. DSPs help to evaluate this data and connect the advertising with other online advertising networks or exchanges in real time.

With an increase of available advertising space on the internet and less attention spans of users, it is important to make ads as relevant as possible. This means better results and higher conversion rates as the consumers reached are more likely to take action.

The writer is the CEO of Prototype Interactive.