Targeting – The New View of the Consumer / Why Geography Matters

By: Beth Keegan, Sr. Vice President, Marketing Solutions, Valassis

Targeting. Everyone in marketing knows the word and has a clear definition of what it means. But something has happened over the past several years, two definitions have come into the mix- one for digital and one for traditional media. For decades whether an advertiser or a retailer, targeting was defined in geographic and demographic terms. The internet has added contextual and behavioral to our targeting vocabulary. Now what?

Let’s start at the beginning. First, we are talking about consumers. No matter what we market or sell, not all consumers are our target – some are, some are not. The core question – how do you find the ones who are and focus marketing efforts on those most likely to buy? Second, consumers use a variety of different media, offline and online. Demographics, context and behavior are key descriptors in selecting media. Third, consumers are local with the majority of their shopping done close to where they live or work. That introduces geography into the discussion. Even for national advertisers, some markets are more valuable than others. So in the rapidly changing world of integrated media, we need it all – geography, demographics and contextual/behavior. Continue Reading →