Adding Apps To Your Targeting Gameplan

June 21, 2016
by Edric Chan – Director of Partnerships

From birds knocking over pigs to live streaming your favorite shows, we all rely heavily on apps.  This fast-growing channel can be a marketer’s dream, but it also presents a unique challenge  – where are the cookies?  Different from traditional display, where users are identified by cookies, mobile web and apps identify users by device IDs. Despite different identification processes, apps are a great way to ensure your brand messaging is aligned across all different devices. Understanding how to connect your brand messaging between apps and other channels will help you target users effectively across multiple screens. Here’s how you can incorporate mobile app targeting into your media mix:

App ID Targeting

A simple way to reach app users is by targeting each app’s unique ID. App ID targeting allows for granularity and tighter controls, due to marketers’ ability to control exactly where their ads will show and how the app content may align with their brand messaging. On the upside, this is an easy and effective way to reach users of a specific app, provided you know which apps you’re looking to reach. Conversely, collecting individual app IDs can be time consuming if you’re intending to curate a larger list, making it harder to scale quickly.

App Verticals / Contextual Targeting

Contextual targeting has a proven track record across all channels and apps are no different. This tactic allows marketers to align their messaging with content at scale by targeting a group of apps that fit within a certain vertical. Because these lists are already grouped, it’s easier to scale your plan across a specific vertical. For example, if a brand is looking to reach fitness enthusiasts, supply partners can provide a sorted group of apps that fit the target of interest.

App Audiences

Just by virtue of the fact that we take our smartphones with us everywhere, mobile devices provide a wealth of data for marketers. Additionally, the types of apps installed on someone’s device can tell us a lot about that user. DSPs, like The Trade Desk, have partnered with many data providers to enable marketers to use these insights to enhance their campaign.  For example, if you are looking to target foodies, you’d look for a user who has multiple cooking or dining related apps on their device.   

Ultimately, there isn’t a “one size fits all” approach when it comes to app targeting. The Trade Desk provides multiple tactics that can be customized to fit specific needs and goals of the overall campaign. Adding app targeting to your overall strategy propels your brand messaging one step further to elevate your campaign as a whole.

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