A few days ago, I received a text message from my best friend: “I think Pandora thinks I’m a lazy carnivore because it keeps playing ads for prepackaged meat.” My response? “Mine gives me ads in Spanish.” It seems not everyone has heard that hyper-targeted marketing is a huge hit with Millennials.
To express how incredibly inaccurate these ads are to our lives, it’s important to note that my friend has been a vegetarian for the last 10 years and I all but flunked Spanish in high school, passing only on my charm and wit. So while her ad was for a product that she would never buy, I couldn’t even understand what mine was for. In fact, the use of Spanish sent me spiraling down a shame-filled memory lane of failed tests and I closed out of the website altogether.
Using data to better refine messaging has been a subject of great discussion among marketers. But as Millennials play a greater role in the market, specific, targeted messaging has become expected. Millennials have come of age in a world that deems it socially acceptable to post photos online and update humanity on their daily interactions. This over-sharing has provided savvy marketers with the data they need to create segments to hyper-target consumers on a highly personal level.
In the eyes of Millennials, broad marketing efforts are an annoyance. Hyper-targeted messages, however, are useful in finding products and services that best suit our needs. They create convenience and are welcomed interactions.
When my alarm clock broke and I posted my sorry excuse for being late online, ads started popping up for extra-durable, battery back-up alarms. In a few clicks, I had a new alarm on the way and saved myself a run to the store and time spent researching clocks that can withstand throws against the wall. This is where data and hyper-targeting is most useful, when marketers not only recognize the product a consumer needs, but are able to determine which product will best fit their needs.
Some generations may find this deep knowledge of a consumer disturbing. However, Millennials have come to expect this type of personalization and brand communication. The report, Content Finds the Consumer, by SDL shows that hyper-targeting is the new norm with 71% of Millennials surveyed saying that they are more likely to listen to hyper-targeted music streaming services like Pandora and Spotify over non-targeted listening options like local radio.
In Noreen O’Leary’s article in Adweek, “5 Agency Leaders on Which Industry Changes Keep Them Up at Night,” Daryl Simm, global CEO, Omnicom Media Group, says that endless hyper-targeting opportunities, marketing the right product to the right person at the right time has become more critical—and necessary—than ever. He equates selling a product without hyper-targeting to marketing cheap gas to someone who takes the train. The same goes for selling meat to a vegetarian.
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