Data is one of the pillars of the entire online marketing sector. Every technology provider talked about it in 2019, each brand devoted time in 2019 to working out how to obtain this data, and now we are all wondering what we should do with them.
As an economic sector, online advertising is based on data. Part of the increase in online advertising, especially during the crisis, is to deliver targeted campaigns to the right audience, measure the effects of the campaign, and identify a specific ROI based on hard data.
So, given our affair with data and knowing what we can do with it, it’s amazing how few people talk about data aging. Depending on the goals set for the campaign, data gains or loses value over time, however, most marketers never question the timeliness of data and don’t think about how this fact can affect the campaign.
Probably, the most discussed topic of data use is behavioral targeting. Although most solution providers use cookie life expectancy (the specific time it stays on the user’s device), cookies are loaded at a specific time and evaluate the user at that point in time until they expire. Does such data indicate at what stage of the purchasing process the user is, or how has the time influenced his transition down or leaving the purchasing funnel?
Building on-line advertising campaigns on outdated data has an impact on its results. Is the user still looking for pants, or maybe after visiting the pants section a week ago, currently looking for shoes on your site? Does this mean he has already bought pants? How quickly a cookie with a three-month life cycle will catch this information?
In IT, there is a great saying: “garbage in, garbage out” in a situation when we are talking about computers uncritically processing data, which can easily be used in the online advertising industry. If you’re serving a dynamic display pants ad to a person who is looking for shoes now, you will not see great results.
At the same time, it affects the entire online advertising industry. We pride ourselves on being transparent, ready to show results and ROI, so when campaigns turn out not to be a great success, there is nowhere to hide. Conducting ineffective campaigns, the entire industry loses credibility and becomes the proverbial 50 percent. from the often cited John Wanamaker. *
But what worries me the most is that marketers don’t ask about data aging. I am often asked what data we use, what data external partners can provide, but I am very rarely asked how we deal with data aging (and when someone asked, I had the impression that he did not take it seriously anyway).
The digital industry has made tremendous progress to be able to deliver the right message at the right time to the right people, but without thinking about what we know about you and how quickly this knowledge changes, we threaten our ability to stay up to date.
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