North American Marketers Embrace People-Based Advertising

April 12, 2016

Digital advertising is at a crossroads, and marketers who embrace – and adapt to – a rapidly evolving media landscape are in the best position to engage customers and make the most of their ad budgets.  This is certainly true in the U.S., where digital display advertising will reach $32.17 billion in 2016, a 19% increase from 2015.

However, an increase in spending doesn’t necessarily translate to improved ROAS or better customer relationships. Today, customers are frustrated by the inundation of irrelevant digital ads, and marketers struggle to measure and understand how their messages are reaching people across devices and channels.

At Signal, we believe addressable media is the next phase of digital advertising and a solution to the many challenges cross-channel behaviors create. We partnered with Econsultancy to survey 350 senior North American marketers and media buyers to understand the impact and future of addressable media within their organizations.

We discovered that advertisers are ready to increase their investments in addressable media solutions that tie their advertising to real customers in real time, empowering them to target digital ads with more precision and relevancy. Through this research, Signal uncovered three key takeaways surrounding the importance of people-based advertising to North American marketers today:

1. Marketers Want to Solve the Cross-Device Challenge

The shift to addressable media is largely driven by the need to target real people in a cross-device world where cookies are increasingly ineffective for tracking and measuring. Advertisers are already embracing people-based media: 25% of media buyers say their clients spend more than half of their budgets on addressable media.

2. People-Based Ad Budgets Will Increase in 2016

North American marketers are fully aware that the digital media landscape is in a state of constant flux, and their budgets are changing as a product of this reality. In fact, 92% of media buyers said they and their clients were increasing their people-based media buys, and nearly one-in-two are doing so quickly.

3. Superior Performances is Driving Change

As advertisers leverage addressable media to tackle the cross-device challenge, they are seeing impressive results. According to the study, 83% of media buyers report superior performance across their clients using people-based targeting, compared to standard media buys. Further, 60% of advertisers report improved click-through and conversion rates with addressable media.

Advertisers today want more opportunities to capitalize on the people-based marketing opportunities they have succeeded with on platforms such as Facebook. As they seek to eliminate the guesswork from digital media, they are ready to extend the precise targeting of people-based media on a broader scale across the many news and information sites that their customers regularly visit.

To learn more, read the full study.

People-Based Advertising Study

Mike Sands is President and CEO of Signal.