Guide to Location Marketing

On Open RTB and on ad network platforms like facebook, Taboola, and Google Ads, advertisers can target users by geolocation. Ad tech companies are using third-party companies like Digital Envoy to identify in real time users’ location.

The main sources to identify a user location are the IP addresses and, in the case of mobile phones, the GPS coordinates. When advertisers use targeting users based on GPS coordinates, the inventory is reduced to APP environments.

“Geographic location plays such an important role in the offline world that our clients demand best-in-class geotargeting solutions that are scalable and globally applicable for their online campaigns.”

David Simon, business development director, Turn

AppNexus, on OpenRTB 2.4 protocol, is sending the following geo information: latitude, longitude, country, region, city, zip, metro, local time (in UTC), and the timezone of the user. Advertisers can then send bid responses based on the information the publisher, via the ad exchange, is sending on the bid requests.

Why is important to focus on location targeting

Geo location targeting is important as websites have cross-border traffic. A website in Portugal will receive visits not only from Portugal, but also from Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, and all the Portuguese-spoken countries. Same in the UK, where the websites will receive many visits from all the English speakers around the world. An advertiser who wants to sell products only in Portugal, will not want to spend marketing budget with users from Brazil, Angola or Mozambique.

What are the geo targetings available?

Advertisers can target all world in the platforms. But most of the advertisers prefer to target at least the country level, for budget allocation reasons, different creatives or the internal structure of the brand. 

Each targeting makes advertisers lose users. When niche targetings are used, like cities, zip codes, and GPS coordinates, more users advertisers miss. These targetings are not 100% correct, and some users can be in Frankfurt, for example, but the IP address is registered in a city nearby.

Advertisers can also work with exclusions, excluding cities, regions, or even countries from their campaigns. This will be effective targeting the unknown. 

Country (web and app)

Country targeting is the most popular targeting. Advertisers can positively targeting a country or exclude a country.

Region (web and app)

Region normally corresponds to states inside the countries.

DMA (web and app)

DMA (Designated Market Area) regions are the geographic areas in the United States in which local television viewing is measured by Nielsen.

City (web and app)

On city targeting, advertisers can only show ads to users in a city. Advertisers can also target a country, for example, and choose a city to exclude and to show a special ad only to that city, in a different campaign. 

Streets (only app)

On DV360 is already possible to target users by street. The street information is then converted into GPS coordinates. This targeting is limited to in appenviroments.

GPS Coordinates (only app)

This enables advertisers to target users in a specific longitude and latitude. Normally each DSP or location provider, like Factual, have a minimum radius of around 50 meters. This targeting is limited to in-app environments. 

Zip Code (web and app)

Zip code targeting is the narrowest targeting based on IP Addresses. This means advertisers can target in-app and in-web environments. Zip code is, however, the less accurate targeting, due to the wrong information in the Telco companies. Check here your zip code for your IP address. For example, our IP Address should have the zip code 60322, but the zip code showing up is 65931.

Geofencing (only app)

Geofencing targeting enables advertisers to target a custom area in a map. This targeting is also associated with GPS coordinates.

Other audiences (web and app)

Some ad platforms make it easy for advertisers to target predefined locations. Is the case of Google that brings the Google Maps product into Google Ads product. Advertisers can target locations based on Google Maps. Example: Restaurants in Frankfurt. 

Geoaudience (only app)

Geo audience is based on GPS coordinates. It is an audience of mobile device ids that were in a location. In some DSPs, geofencing audiences can be extended to cookies, so advertisers can also target web environments. 

Alternatives to geotargeting

If an advertiser does an international campaign he can target language instead of targeting geo locations. 

An advertiser can also not use geotargeting on retargeting, avoid losing the users to VPNs, for example. 

By user keywords in exact match, having the language on top, can be an alternative way to do geotargeting.

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