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Behavioural targeting: What, how, why

Would you rather see ads for things you're interested in or ads that have nothing to do with you?

For marketers, behavioural targeting is a game-changer. It helps them reach the right people with the right message at the right time. This means they're more likely to grab your attention and get you to click on an ad or make a purchase.

In the world of marketing, understanding your customer is one of the most important things you can do. Once you've understood exactly who you're selling to, you can begin to make informed marketing decisions and take a strategic approach to everything you do.

But how can you find out who your buyer persona is?

You'll already know the fundamentals like location, age and lifestyle.

Of course, these things are important and will contribute to your marketing decisions.

Behavioural targeting can be enhanced by combining it with demographic audience data. Demographic data includes information like age, gender, location, income, and education level. By combining behavioural and demographic data, marketers can create even more targeted campaigns.

But demographics only make up half of the puzzle.

Behavioural targeting saves you time, energy, and guesswork. It provides you with the clues you need to make your next marketing moves.

What is behavioural targeting?

To put it simply, behavioural targeting is a way of marketing where you can focus on what your audience does online - like the websites they visit or the things they buy. It's the closest thing you'll get to mind-reading your buyer persona.

As a customer, behavioural targeting makes ads more relevant to you. Overall, it makes your online experience more enjoyable.

It's like being a detective, looking for clues about what someone might be interested in.

Here's how it works:

  1. Collect data
  2. Analyse patterns
  3. Create groups
  4. Target ads
Collect data

First, gather information about what your audience does online. This could be what they search for, the pages they look at, and the products they click on.

That doesn't mean you need to start breaking a million GDPR rules. There are tons of ways you can collect data from your buyer persona.

  • Conduct surveys about their online behaviour
  • Email newsletters
  • Look at chatbot conversations
  • Social media
  • Web analytics

Essentially, you want to reign in as much information as you can get your hands on.

Analyse patterns

Look for patterns in the data that you are looking at.

It might look like a sprawl of information to begin with, but once you start asking questions and making links, patterns will emerge.

For example, people who buy sports shoes will probably watch workout videos. People who are reading dog nutrition blogs are probably going to buy dog-walking leads.

Create groups

Then, you put people into groups based on their interests. For example, you might have a group for "fitness fans" or "tech lovers."

Your CRM will help here. You can integrate both demographic and behavioural data into your CRM to get a more complete view of their customers.

Integrating demographics will give you a well-rounded view of your buyer persona until it creates a full profile. This allows you to see not only who your customers are but also how they behave online.

Target content

Now, you can expose suitable content to these groups. The content will match what they like, and that's it. You're more likely to generate sales from these segmented buyer personas because they're viewing ads that they're genuinely interested in.

So, fitness fans might see ads for gym clothes. Eco-friendly dog enthusiasts are more likely to see ads for dog treats produced by sustainable companies.

Why use behavioural targeting?

Using behavioural targeting can help your marketing because it makes sure the right people see your ads. Instead of showing the same ad to everyone, you're showing people stuff they're more likely to want.

Using behavioural targeting can help you:

  • Increase the relevance of your marketing
    More relevant and personalised content will lead to higher engagement and conversions.
  • Improve ROI 
    Targeted campaigns are more likely to resonate with users, resulting in higher ROI compared to generic campaigns.
  • Better user experience
    Behavioural targeting can help create a more personalised and seamless user experience, which can improve brand perception and loyalty
  • Enhance campaign performance
    Continuously optimising your campaigns based on performance data will help you improve campaign effectiveness over time

This means you can streamline your marketing and generate a heftier number of sales per campaign. It's efficient, it's logical and it works.

Behavioural targeting is like having an invisible personal shopper for content. So, the next time you see an ad that seems to know exactly what you're looking for, behavioural targeting is most likely behind it.

Who is my buyer persona?

If you need some more info about buyer personas and targeted marketing content, then head over to our free resources. We've got a free downloadable buyer persona guide which provides you with a useful persona template.

Or if you'd prefer to get in touch with us directly to pick our brains about all things growth - don't be a stranger, and pop us a message.

Download Buyer Persona Guide