Behavioral Advertising: What Is It & How Does It Work?

behavioral advertising
Advertising has changed a lot over the years, and honestly, it’s pretty complicated now. There are so many possibilities and opportunities to reach your target audience—but with more options come more questions. We’re going to answer a few of them here! Let’s dive into one of the options: behavioral advertising. 

What Is Behavioral Advertising?

Behavioral advertising allows you to target your ads to specific people based on their online behaviors. In this way, your ad is being shown to whoever seems the most likely to be interested in your product or service, based on what else they look at on the internet. 
You’ve no doubt been a participant in this sort of advertising many, many times! But just in case you haven’t noticed, here’s a good example:
Let’s say you own a cat litter subscription service. People sign up (and pay, of course) to have your cat litter shipped to their doorstep once a month, so they don’t have to get it at the store. The online behaviors you would want to target would involve cats, right? Whether it’s a competitor’s website, a website that sells cat toys, or an online forum where people can talk about their cats—you can be pretty sure that people who visit these websites have cats, and therefore would be potentially interested in your service. So you serve them an ad. It’s creepy. And it works. And it’s amazing. 

So, How Does Behavioral Advertising Actually Work?

We’ll keep this part simple by breaking it down into three steps: data collection, user segmentation, and targeting application. 
Data Collection
In this initial phase, user data is collected via several different avenues—like third-party cookies, marketing automation systems, and mobile apps. The information gathered can be used to determine a lot of behaviors, like the websites people are visiting, how long they look around, what they click on, their purchase history, etc. 
User Segmentation
Once this data is collected, stored, and analyzed, behavior patterns become clear, and the audience is separated into segments. This way, the advertiser (us!) can target ads directly to the segment that would be most interested in their product or service being advertised. 
Targeting Application
Now the really fun part—advertising to those people! Instead of seeing random ads for random things, your potential customers will see custom ads designed for them and their behaviors, meaning they’re much more likely to convert and engage. 

Interested in Behavioral Advertising?

We do a lot more than just behavioral advertising, but it’s a service we’re very familiar with. We can target your ideal audience and get more conversions for your business. Why not start a conversation with us? We think we’re nice—at least enough to do business with.

About Luke

Luke is Uptick’s Director of Content Marketing. He earned his Master of Technical and Professional Communication from Auburn University and a bachelor’s in English from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. He has also been professionally copywriting for more than half a decade. In his role as Director of Content Marketing, Luke manages a team of copywriters and graphic designers, is heavily involved in client communication, strategizes content marketing for clients, and more. His copywriting focus includes writing for technical, industrial, and scientific clientele, but he’s also been known to throw his fair share of puns around.

See more articles from Luke Richey