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For companies to create custom-tailored advertisements, they first need to know something about you. There are four main kinds of data that help give great insight into the taste and preferences that can help make tailor-made advertisements.
Let’s say that you go on Google and search for cat food. You flip through various sites that give you different price ranges, flavors and the whole nine yards about every type of cat food imaginable. Curiously, when you switch to Facebook, you notice something very peculiar. For some mysterious reason, your Facebook adverts are filled with cat food!
Now, these adverts might show up instantaneously, or within a day or two, but you will end up seeing them. How is this possible… is Facebook spying on you? In a way, yes… welcome to the world of custom-tailored internet advertisements!
Collection of Data
The first thing companies need to create custom-tailored advertisements is information about you.
There are four main kinds of data that provide great insights into tastes and preferences that can help make advertisements tailor-made. The first kind of data is clickstream data.
In customized advertisements, clickstream refers to the record of webpages that you’ve visited. This data is collected by using a tiny text file known as a cookie. To give some perspective on what cookies are, it’s a text file sent by a website to your computer so that it can track your movements within the site’s pages.
The second kind of data that is viable for custom advertisements is Search Data. A 2011 Pew Internet Survey showed that 92% of adults on the internet used the services of search engine giants, such as Yahoo and Google. These search giants saw that advertising was a profitable avenue, given the amount of data they were able to collect on such a massive scale.
Search Engines can analyze search terms and user habits to place targeted advertising alongside natural search results; they often allow companies to pay them for a higher position among the search results for particular keywords. That’s why, when you search for “sleeping bags”, larger outdoor companies often appear first, while advertisements for sleeping bags will soon line the margins of the page.
In these websites, as a user, you often voluntarily provide crucial data, such as age, interests, favorite movies and a plethora of other data that gives companies an accurate description of your tastes.
The IP part of an IP address stands for Internet Protocol. The address part of it refers to a unique number linked to all the online activity you do. This is more intuitively understood as the return address to the mail you’ve sent. The first thing you need to realize is that your computer is connected to the Internet in one way or another. Whether you go online to write an email, to shop, or to chat, your request must be sent out to the right destination, and the responses and information you want must come directly back to you.
An IP address plays a significant role in that. It helps you and your computer connect to the Internet in somewhat of an indirect fashion. The IP address first enables you to connect to the network, which gives you access to the Internet. The second thing it does is permit you to access the Internet. The network might be your Internet Service Provider at your house or a network in a shop or office.
In conclusion, companies like Facebook curate data with the aid of technological tactics, such as IP targeting, to provide users with the best and most relevant advertisements to increase the purchase probability of the consumer. Customized advertisement is a cross-platform endeavor that strives to use a plethora of methods to tailor the user experience towards recognizing and engaging with relevant ads.