Online display advertising continues to grow in popularity as internet usage increases among all audiences — particularly seniors. With online display, ads are served to users as they browse online, enticing the user to click and learn more about your community or product. Display advertising offers numerous ways to target users — using demographics, age, location, past online behavior and more. Geo-fencing is a form of location-based online display targeting that is generating a buzz in the market, and rightfully so.
Geo-fencing allows advertisers to reach individuals who enter a specific location, taking geographic targeting a step further from a radius or group of ZIP codes down to a single address or building. As the name suggests, geo-fencing serves as a virtual fence, triggering ads to people on the devices they carry with them, such as mobile phones or tablets, as they enter the fenced area and browse the internet. With mobile traffic continuing to grow, coupled with the flexibility in both strategy and creativity geo-fencing offers, advertisers are becoming innovative in the different opportunities it can present.
As with any marketing effort, it is important to first determine the goals and desired outcomes of your campaigns to select the ideal targeting methods. Second, understanding your consumers and their interests, characteristics and demographics will also spark ideas on how to target these individuals and determine if geo-fencing is a good fit for your online display campaign. For example, if your campaign goal is to reach Professional Influencers, geo-fencing a hospital or clinic may be the tactic needed to reach doctors, registered nurses or even discharge planners.
In some situations, the amount of time a user will be in a specific location AND browsing the internet may be limited. To maximize impact, geo-framing (also known as geo-retargeting) may supplement a campaign, allowing advertisers to continue to serve ads to users even after they leave the geo-fenced location — further capitalizing on the geo-fenced audience.
There’s also opportunity to take geo-fencing a step further from targeting a user’s location alone. It can be beneficial to add additional targeting parameters to your campaign to refine the audience even more, such as including an age requirement to ensure ads are only served to age-qualified individuals within the desired location.
As online display targeting methods continue to evolve, so will the applications. Understanding your consumer, weighing the options, and being creative with the delivery and messaging while being true to your brand will resonate with users — and hopefully entice them to click through to your website and interact with your brand.