If It Looks Like Real-Time, It Must Be Lookalike Time

In one of the most surprising temporal mash-ups of consumer data flow I’ve seen yet, real-world data targeting firm TruSignal has developed a method for integrating offline consumer profiles with BlueKai’s real-time, “in-market” consumer behavior data. The result is a new form of pseudo-targeting TruSignal President David Dowhan calls “interest-based lookalikes.”

Like other offline/online data integrations, the new targeting method blurs the lines between the digital and analogue worlds. But unlike other methods, it also blurs the line between real-time and asynchronous consumer targeting, treating consumers who may or may not currently be in-market, based on their lookalike surrogates who actually are.

“It’s an interesting mix,” Dowhan concedes, adding, “Typically you stay with one modality or the other.”

In the case of TruSignal’s core product, that means profiling consumers based on relatively fixed attributes such as demographics, income, education, location, lifestyles, etc. to identify which products and services they have the greatest propensity for. Those propensity profiles already are part of BlueKai’s established taxonomy, and are among the attributes programmatic traders use when they target consumers via BlueKai. Now TruSignal is doing the opposite, effectively cross-licensing BlueKai’s real-time consumer behavior data to refine the propensity of its consumer segments to make them look more like the in-market counterparts they are most like.

The real value of the technique, he says, is its ability to “extend the reach” for branding campaigns utilizing real-time buying.

“There’s only so much real-time behavior data,” he explains. It’s limited in quantity, and this gives marketers a way to extend their campaign reach to prospects who may be in-market in the next six months.”

Published 3/13/2013 on MediaPost.com
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