5 ways to leverage behavioral targeting to increase customer engagement

Behavioral targeting can be a critical factor in increasing customer engagement. When you’re able to gain a keen understanding of what people are doing on your website, app or with your campaigns, you can use that information to determine which messages and advertisements will resonate the best with them. When messages and advertisements are personalized, customers will be more compelled to engage with them.

The Business Journals

From analyzing regular audits to focusing on retargeting, there are a few different strategies that entrepreneurs and businesses can use to leverage behavioral targeting to increase customer engagement with their products or services. Here, five members of Business Journals Leadership Trust discuss the most effective ones and what makes them so effective.

1. Take an unbiased look at customers’ past actions.
The beauty of behavioral targeting is that it is unbiased and based on past actions. Focus groups and surveys capture intent or perception, but behavioral data is based on action. It’s the ultimate truth and therefore provides very accurate targeting. – Kent Lewis, Deksia

2. Consider the goal and action you want them to take.
Behavioral targeting can draw in your consumer to the brand engagement action you’d like your consumer to have with your brand. If the goal is for them to like a post, take advantage of a special offer or forward information to family and friends, your brand messaging can be dynamically served to your consumer with the action you want them to take, helping affect the behavioral action goal. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne Advertising

3. Create behavior-based retargeting campaigns.
Using behavioral targeting in customized remarketing and retargeting is an efficient way to bring users back to your website and encourage them to interact with your product more meaningfully. Create retargeting campaigns based on customer behavior patterns to take them back to the part of your website or product they will most likely find useful and enjoy. – Peter Abualzolof, Mashvisor

4. Conduct a weekly social media engagement audit.
Do a weekly audit of the people that are engaging with your content on social media. Literally, click and review their profiles and see what is important to them. You will find out triggers of conversion that you may not have found through more automated research. – Christopher Tompkins, The Go! Agency

5. Focus on your client to bring in the ‘right’ business.
Behavioral targeting ensures that you’re focused on your client. When you focus on your client, you have more success bringing on the “right” type of business for your brand. It is effective because you don’t bring on the wrong customers who actually can damage your business and put you out of business if you’re not careful. – David Wescott, Transblue

8 essential things to understand about consumer psychology

Every business needs customers to survive and thrive. Gaining a better understanding of consumers as individuals can help inform current and future business decisions.

The Business Journals

It’s important to understand everything you can about your customers, but there are some essential things to focus on that drive deeper connections. Here, eight members of Business Journals Leadership Trust discuss what those things are and how they help.

1. Find out their interests/passions to offer value.
Understand that these are individuals that breathe air and have interests, passions, things they hate and things they love. Then, find out what they are and how you can offer value to them in terms of content and more. – Christopher Tompkins, The Go! Agency

2. Watch what they do.
Watch what consumers do, not what they say. Consumers are notoriously bad at saying what they are willing to spend money on, but they often don’t really know what they want until they experience it. Build testing into your product to give consumers options and watch what they choose. Think of the adage, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said faster horses.” – Jeremy Brandt, 1-800-CashOffer

3. Note the breadth of their areas of concern.
Companies should learn what the biggest areas consumers are concerned about are because when you solve concerns or fears, you are creating stickiness with your customers. Additionally, noting the breadth of these issues will provide you with ideas on product extensions or new ways to meet current or future customer needs. – Kimberly Janson, Janson Associates

4. Understand why companies buy from you.
Understand why your companies buy from you. What is their “why” for working with you? What is your superpower? Identifying this and focusing on it in your business will help your business hit the goals you have in place. Business is about relationships, and the stronger the relationships the stronger the business. – David Wescott, Transblue

5. Create buyer personas of primary segments.
The most effective and efficient path to understanding your customers as individuals is to create buyer personas that consist of composite images of primary customer segments. With defined personas the entire company can rally behind, the next step is to dive deeper into their psychology. Consider what the problems are that you are solving, their symptoms and associated emotions. This is foundational marketing. – Kent Lewis, Deksia

6. Help them understand whole-life benefits.
A consumer needs to genuinely understand what the product benefits are, from a whole life perspective, and how it will positively impact them, society and the environment. – Jessica Hawthorne-Castro, Hawthorne Advertising

7. Add or create value with every interaction.
Every customer interaction or touch point can only yield one of three results: maintain the status quo, destroy trust or create/add new value to the customers. Unfortunately, two of the above-mentioned approaches yield the same negative outcome. Develop a strategy to add/create value with every interaction. Value creation should be front and center with each interaction — no exception. – Quoc Nguyen, Arthur Lawrence, LLC.

8. Collect feedback from satisfied customers.
One of the basic principles of consumer psychology that many businesses fail to understand and apply is that customers are significantly more likely to trust other customers than anyone else when it comes to choosing whether or not to go with your product. Thus, businesses need to focus on collecting positive feedback from satisfied consumers to build brand awareness and new consumer trust. – Peter Abualzolof, Mashvisor

Consumers Are Checking Their Phones 60 Times a Day. Here’s How to Monetize These Micro-Moments

Scanning news headlines on a tablet before going to sleep. Using a mobile app to find an Italian restaurant with the highest number of 5-star reviews. Browsing this month’s best streaming videos.

For most of us, the brief activities described above have become habitual. Recognizing the trend, Google came up with the term “micro-moments” to describe the many times a day that people automatically grab their phones or tablets to watch a video, take an action or look up something. As society becomes truly “mobile-first,” these “micro-moments” are now intertwined with our daily lives.

Each micro-moment is an opportunity for brands
Whether consumers use mobile phones to look for a recipe on Allrecipes, search for a long-lost high school friend on Classmates or scroll through Zillow listings for a dream home, they are reflexively turning to their devices for answers and solutions.
The trend is common in the on-demand economy, where customers expect to have answers at their fingertips 24/7. “The powerful computers we carry in our pockets have trained us to expect brands to immediately deliver exactly what we’re looking for when we’re looking,” content director Joei Chan writes in Mention.

“With our increasing dependence on smartphones, the consumer journey has been fractured into hundreds of real-time, intent-driven micro-moments,” Chan continues. “Each one is a critical opportunity for brands to shape our decisions and preferences.”

Getting consumers to act
For marketers, micro-moments are an opportunity to get consumers to act when their expectations are high and their time is short. With over half of smartphone users discovering new companies or products when conducting searches online—and with brand awareness increasing by 46% when a company simply shows up in mobile search results—marketers have a lot of opportunities to maximize micro-moments.

For instance, a 20-something male watching a sports recap on his phone on YouTube may be persuaded to test drive the newest model of his favorite car brand. Or, a woman who goes online for help creating a top-knot hairstyle would probably be receptive to trying out a promising new hair product to keep that updo in place.

By using videos to put your brand in the middle of these moments, you can effectively address your customers’ needs and “help move them along [in] their decision journey,” Choi writes.
Micro-moments also help companies break out of the traditional linear sales funnel and present relevant content that aligns with those split seconds of time.

It’s important to remember to focus on creating an intuitive experience that guides customers to a frictionless purchase when developing video or other content. Use these micro-moments to tell your brand’s story, maximize these small flashes of time and improve your advertising return on investment.

Riding the ecommerce wave
With ecommerce sales expected to surpass $740 billion by 2023 in the U.S.—and 81% of shoppers researching products online before hitting “buy”—marketers can maximize micro-moments by simply listening to customers. For example, use social listening to ask simple questions in an Instagram story or on Twitter, or use a current event to grab your customer’s attention in the moment.

Younger consumers may be especially receptive to micro-moment marketing. “The question to ask is: ‘Would your Gen Z customer be interested in participating in a conversation with your brand about an ugly sweater?’” UNiDays asks. “If the answer is ‘yes,’ then perfect. Once you’ve found something that will resonate with Gen Z preferences, you can start a fun dialogue that might just convert to a sale.”
While disruptive and challenging, the global pandemic has also given marketers more opportunities to engage with their customers through micro-moments.

For example, with more people interacting, socializing and shopping online, the number of potential “touches” has undoubtedly grown exponentially since 2020. And with the average smartphone user checking his or her phone 63 times a day (even higher with Gen Z audiences), there are still a lot of untapped touchpoints to explore and monetize.