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Why Demographic and Behavioral Targeting Matters

In the early days of the WWW (ie: 1990-2000) what mattered was your ability to stuff your webpages with keyword rich text, in the hopes that the unsophisticated search engine bots would index common and obscure phrases and direct users to your pages when a user typed in an obscure Yoda-like “nano cheap”.

While search engines and high authority sites (ie media buy bait) still contribute the bulk of search engine traffic, the days of keyword-driven traffic will increasingly have to compete with the likes of demographically-driven and behavioral-targeted traffic.

What’s the difference between these types of traffic? Using the one and only jargon-ish phrase, imagine keyword-driven traffic as the “lose 10 pounds in a week”, “acai weight loss” and “tivo tcd649080 coupon code” queries that you might already be bidding on via PPC, PPV or other forms of contextual advertising.

But here’s the kicker, if you know that the primary characteristics of 73% of these buyers are:

  • white males
  • aged 30-45
  • living in metropolitan areas with a 2 million of higher population
  • college education or higher
  • average income of $60,000 and up

(ie demographic data), wouldn’t it make your marketing much easier (and more profitable?).

Behavioral targeting takes it one step further by correlating specific behavior patterns and groups it together. For example, if said Tivo buyers were likely to own a Ford or Honda sedan, and 1 in 3 of them were likely to drive a hybrid Prius (even with dodgy accelerator pedal), wouldn’t that open up more source of traffic?

I have no idea how many CSIs (crime scene investigators) are there in the affiliate community, but if you see how their work involves taking micro bits of evidence and piecing it into a cohesive whole, isn’t that the same type of reverse engineering process affiliates are following, taking keywords, or demographic profiles and piecing them into a Tivo, e-cig or grants consumer?

Oh yeah, be sure to check out this month’s InternetMarketingCookbook.com demographic targeting update for more sniper-like marketing goodies.

10 comments on Why Demographic and Behavioral Targeting Matters

  1. Josh Todd
    February 4, 2010 at 6:57 am (3811 days ago)

    First. Good post btw.

  2. Nimit Kashyap
    February 4, 2010 at 8:06 am (3811 days ago)

    Very informative post indeed

  3. proson
    February 5, 2010 at 2:52 pm (3810 days ago)

    That reminds me that demographic data should not be overlooked where everyone is just focusing on keyword targeted traffic,

  4. tom
    February 5, 2010 at 5:01 pm (3810 days ago)

    Thanks for that, i need to start adverting on fb again, but im looking for a new niche

  5. SEM Antics
    February 5, 2010 at 9:24 pm (3810 days ago)

    Not quite in that demographic yet…

    It’s this type of information though that can make the difference between the wannabe’s and the professionals. What people don’t seem to realise is that by researching demographic and analytics data you get better results.

  6. Janette Speyer
    February 11, 2010 at 2:59 am (3805 days ago)

    Thanks for writing this blog. Behavioral targeting makes an excellent case for customized online marketing programs. Not all clients have the same requirements and therefore need a customized approach rather than a shotgun automated one. As SEM Antics said it can make the difference between the wannabe’s and the professionals.

  7. Jared @ AlternativeHealthWarehouse.com
    February 11, 2010 at 4:14 am (3804 days ago)

    I like your analogy to CSI, I’ve never thought about online marketing like this before. Thanks, now to find out how to collect this information and use it to my advantage online… Gas Scooters, etc.

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