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Anatomy of a Display Campaign: Messaging Your Target Audience

Kerry Guard • February 4, 2012 • 2 minutes to read

After defining your audience next determine what your target audience needs to know and what actions they should take to find out more.

This is one of the most important pieces of the campaign as this is what will be measured and optimized against to improve your campaign over time.

First, message.

This can be as simple as a tag line that you already use.  Or it can be more robust and in a story telling fashion to convey a point such as how this product will create more productivity and save your target money. What ever the message, make it:

  • Concise: Short, sweet, & to the point
  • Clear: Make sure your audience knows exactly how this product can help them
  • Targeted: Now that your audience is defined, make sure your message speaks directly to that target as mentioned in the previous part 1 under, "When should each target be used?"

In a recent article on Adage, the new market global director for Facebook, formerly the director of Levi's & Apple, made the statement in regards to how an iPhone was developed and how she translates that into her marketing approach:

It was first and foremost about the user experience. And that's how I approach marketing, that theme of focusing on what's important to the customer. -- Rebecca Van Dyck, Facebook Head of Global Marketing

The message should be handled in the same manner. Through messaging you're telling your customer you know what is important to them.

Second, call-to-action (CTA)

This copy is usually in a button or next to an arrow directing users to click and go to the website. It gives users purpose to click. This is where your audience knows how they can learn more about your product whether through a free trial, downloading a free white paper, or getting a free quote.

Note, how "free" was used in all three examples.  It helps users know you're not asking for money, and you really do want them to learn more.  If you're pushing for a product purchase be clear and say, "Buy now". It's best to be direct. You'll experience less drop of and get better return from the users who do click.

Finally, multiples

Use several messages and CTA executions to allow for testing, learning, and optimizing:

  • One message may work better over another
  • One CTA may drive more initial downloads upfront & another more revenue in the long run
  • Most ad servers have creative optimization tools where they look down to the placement level to deliver a creative that is performing best in that spot

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