What Retailers Should Know About the…

What Retailers Should Know About the Data Powering Their Campaigns

shopcrowdNote: This blog post is an excerpt from our simple illustrated guide to programmatic for retailers.

Programmatic advertising can be challenging, even to the most skilled marketer.

Especially when you begin incorporating third-party data to expand your marketing efforts, it can be a headache to properly evaluate the quality of a data set. But by asking the right questions upfront, retailers can set themselves up for successful campaigns that meet their business objectives.

Here are five topics that retailers should discuss with their agency or data providers:

1. Source

Why it’s important: Knowing the source of your data can help you evaluate its accuracy, relevance and quality.

Questions to ask:

  • Where is this data from?
  • Who collected the data, and how is it collected?
  • Is the data pulled direct from a first-party source?
  • Is this data purely observed (people who have taken a specific action), or modeled from an observed data set? Learn more about the distinction between observed, modeled and declared data here.

2. Recency

Why it’s important: The more real-time the audience, the more likely it comprises people who are currently interested in a product or category. The importance of data recency will depend on the objectives of your campaign. For more top-of-funnel awareness efforts, such as branding campaigns, it may be more useful to understand an audience’s profile data or to leverage offline CRM data, rather than track consumer’s “day of” activity. However, for more bottom-of-funnel campaigns where the goal is to increase conversions, it’s much more important to reach consumers at the moment of purchase—meaning that data recency is key.

Questions to ask:

  • How recently was this audience sourced?
  • Is this data updated in real-time (at least daily)? Or weekly, monthly?

3. Uniqueness

Why it’s important: If the audience you’re buying isn’t unique, you may already be targeting these consumers. There will always be some overlap within audiences of similar categories, but if there is a lot of overlap, these audiences may already be receiving a lot of similar competitor advertising. Unique data allows you to discover and reach new targets who haven’t been oversaturated by similar ads. In case you were curious, Connexity data is 90% unduplicated in relation to comparable third-party segments, which is an unusually high number.

Questions to ask:

  • What percentage of this audience is unduplicated when compared to similar segments?
  • Would you feel comfortable with me performing an overlap analysis?

4. Modeled vs. Observed

Why it’s important: Understanding the type of data you’re using, whether it’s “declared” or “inferred” can be confusing. Learn more about how to demystify these different data types and audience attributes here, so you’re prepared to better ask the questions below.

Questions to ask:

  • What type of data are you using for the campaign?
  • Is the data inferred, observed or declared?
  • Is the audience an observed data audience, based on users who took a specific action? Or, is it modeled data based on a set of past buyers?

5. Interest vs. Intent

Why it’s important: Interest-based audiences may want to consume content or know more about a wider variety of products within a specific category (for example, “Audience A” might frequently read golf blogs). Intent-based audiences have been identified as having an intent to purchase, whether by searching for specific products, comparing product pricing or adding products to their cart (for example, “Audience B” may have recently shopped for golf clubs and compared prices for 5-irons). Both types of behavior can be extremely valuable for a marketer, but it’s also important to identify whether “Audience A” or “Audience B” is most relevant to your efforts, depending on the goals of your campaign.

Questions to ask:

  • Is the data interest-based, comprising people who read relevant content or visited websites relating to our products or industry?
  • Or, it is intent-based, which comprise audiences that were recently shopping for specific products, filled out a form, added the product to their cart or otherwise demonstrated intent to take a specific action?

By just asking the right questions, you can find out fairly quickly whether the data on hand meets your needs.

This blog post is an excerpt from our simple illustrated guide to programmatic for e-Commerce brands. Download the full “Programmatic 101 for Retailers” Guide to learn more.