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Why is Contextual Targeting more relevant than ever?

AdFalcon Blog Our online journal

Contextual advertising is online advertising where an ad is placed on the website based on its content—in simple terms, putting beauty product ads on a fashion website or advertising tour packages on a travel website.  The focus of this advertising tool is on the content that is being consumed and not on the one consuming that content. Since the viewer is already interested in the website’s content, this advertisement becomes highly relevant for the audience. Multiple research pieces have also found that when an ad is served in the digital world without a context, it negatively impacts the brand in the user’s mind. However, that negative impact is mitigated to a large extent when advertisers adopt the contextual targeting route.

Many experts believe that it is a rebirth for contextual targeting, which the advertisers primarily sidelined in favor of behavioral advertising­, a tool where advertisers targeted shoppers based on their web browsing behavior. According to a research report by Global Industry Analytics Inc, the global contextual advertising market will reach USD 335.1 billion by 2026.

But in the new world where brands are staring at stricter privacy laws and ban on third-party cookies, advertisers have gone back to contextual targeting in a significant way to be compliant at all times. This article will look into the factors that make contextual targeting more relevant than ever for advertisers.

Across the globe, consumers today are more aware of data privacy laws and are better equipped to know how much data they want to share and how they can restrict the companies from accessing unwanted information.  On top of it, stricter regulations like GDPR and CCPA have made things worse for companies relying entirely on cookie-based ad targeting. Later Google announced that third-party cookies will disappear from Chrome in 2022, followed by Apple’s advisory that users will have to opt-in to IDFA.

As a result of these developments, the scales have tilted in favor of contextual targeting. Because, unlike cookie-based targeting, contextual targeting does not rely on those and is one of the few ad-targeting methods that comply with the international privacy laws. Hence, advertisers are scrambling to get their contextual advertising strategy on point.

Apart from the privacy issue that contextual targeting addresses, today, with the help of robust artificial intelligence and algorithms, content analysis of web pages have improved significantly. As opposed to earlier times, AI can now detect the context and understand the sentiment of the content on the web page where the ad is to be placed more accurately.

As a result, contextual targeting has moved by leaps and bounds from analyzing the usual keywords on a web page to studying different forms of content like audio, video, and imagery to give marketers an accurate understanding of the context. Hence, these advancements have also made advertisers take note of this form of advertising hugely.

AdFalcon is one of the few customer acquisition platforms to bring Oracle contextual intelligence technology to the MENA region. This technology which is off the shelf and ready to activate, gives our clients access to more than 250 curated categories and is available in major DSPs.

In conclusion, to increase the relevance of contextual targeting in the future, brands will have to devise ways to reach the audiences more personally to improve the tools’ efficacy. They will also have to work on a mechanism where the accuracy of the ad placement is bang on target.