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Mobile advertising is one of the key questions that most destinations and tourism businesses are discussing. Most have a state of mind, knowing how important mobile is, that there is no way around it and are now working very hard on embracing the opportunities arising from mobile for their businesses. However, mobile advertisement is changing thanks to major advances and mobile ad targeting is still evolving and changing, meaning it can be better described as work in progress. Nevertheless, mobile ad targeting is mainly dealing with targeting ads to specific devices and operating systems but more recent developments are now moving to different forms of mobile ad targeting (eMarketer 2014).

MULTISCREEN TARGETING

Multiscreen targeting is one of these new forms of mobile ad targeting, mainly due to the fact that most consumers are actually using multiple web-enabled devices. The amount of consumers using devices is also increasing, leading to more and more consumers worldwide spending and increasing amount of time using these devices. For marketers and tourism businesses this then leads to considering and thinking about mobile ad targeting and specifically on multiscreen ad campaigns. Already, the amount of investments into multiscreen ad campaigns is growing and marketers worldwide expect this to grow even further due to consumer behaviour moving more and more towards using several devices and screens.

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Although mobile ad targeting seems complicated on a first glance, it is not. Surprisingly, there is an awful lot of data that consumers leave behind when accessing social networks and websites. Facebook for example has a huge advantage with regards to providing mobile display ads, as the social networks knows the account IDs of its users which actually makes it very easy to target. Facebook can recognise the ID and target it with ads that are based on the personal profile and behaviour associated with the specific ID.

Other companies and ad providers (the likes of Google, Amazon, and eBay) have a wealth of data and insights available about their consumers accessing the sites via mobile, making it possible for tourism companies and businesses to actually target ads. Most companies develop audience profiles and assess the consumer behaviour to establish audience targeting capabilities, looking at how users are using smartphones and tablets to consume content which then can be used as a basis to target specific user profiles through targeted mobile ads.

Undoubtedly, this is something that a lot of destinations and tourism businesses are looking into, as time, relevancy and context are equally important when targeting consumers through mobile ads than desktop ads. The opportunities for companies are huge and it will be interesting to follow how destinations are using ads within their sites, apps and maybe even other companies’ apps in order to reach the end consumers and ultimately get them to travel to the destination.

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