EXTERNAL TARGETING: TARGETING WITHOUT THIRD PARTY COOKIES

EXTERNAL TARGETING: TARGETING WITHOUT THIRD PARTY COOKIES

Using third-party cookie data in digital marketing to deliver relevant and personalized ads to users has been a powerful targeting tactic used by marketers. However, as privacy concerns continue to grow, there have been many discussions about cookie-less targeting. 

Instead of setting a cookie in the user’s browser, Adacado provides the ability to use External Targeting methods to tailor ads to specific audiences or to set rules for displaying specific products in ads.

How to Use Adacado’s External Targeting

Adacado’s External Targeting allows you to deliver targeted ads to users by passing the information you want to target directly into Adacado’s ad tags, even without implementing the Adacado pixel on your website.

This targeting is only possible if: 

  • When using Adacado’s ad tag to traffic ads through other DSPs; and
  • You have generated product data in Adacado using a data feed, and the product data contains the data fields/values you want to target.

You need to insert two main parameters for External Targeting into Adacado’s ad tag of your campaigns.

  • externalTargeting
  • externalTargetingValue

How External Targeting Parameters Work

externalTargeting

This parameter is used to add data classification names that match data fields such as Product ID, Category, Brand, etc. that you want to target using External Targeting. This classification must match the data field name used in the data mapping to generate the product data. Each business type (Retail, Auto, Real Estate, or Hotel) has a list of data classification names that you can use in this parameter. You must manually insert the classification name into this parameter of your ad tag.

*NOTE*

This parameter does not accept comma-delimited lists:

  • Good example: productId
  • Bad example: productId,category,color

Data Classification Name by Business Type:

Retail

Auto

Real Estate

Hotel

*NOTE*

The data classification name must be camelcase(e.g. lowercaseUppercase).

externalTargetingValue

This parameter is used to pass the actual trigger value to display the targeted ad. You can either hardcode the trigger value manually or insert a macro from your DSP that can pass dynamic values to Adacad’s ad tag.

*NOTE*

For dynamic product ads based on different trigger values passed in the ad request, you need to make sure your DSP has macros to populate and pass the desired targeting values.

The “to-be-queried” value in this parameter must meet the requirements below:

  • The value must match the data provided in the data feed. There is no wildcard used for querying.
  • Only alphanumeric characters and spaces are allowed in the value passed in this parameter. Values cannot contain the characters such as “<“,”>”, “-“, “&”, and “,” and because these characters are not allowed, the data feed values for the targeted field must also not include those characters, otherwise there won’t be a match. 
  • A comma is allowed as the delimiter for more than one value, but using a comma in a value is not permitted.
  • Values passed in External Targeting are Javascript-based, so MIME encoding should not be applied. Values are taken as-is. If the values are MIME-encoded and the values in the product data are not, the result may be unexpected. 
  • A comma-delimited list is accepted for this parameter.

If these requirements are not met, targeting will not work as expected.

How to Add the External Targeting Parameters to Adacado Ad Tag

After completing your ad creative, copy or download the ad tag for your campaign from the Ad Delivery Settings page and manually add the two external targeting parameters with placeholders to your ad tag. Click here to learn more about downloading the Adacado ad tag for your DSP.

  • p[“externalTargeting”] = “DATA_CLASSIFICATION_PLACEHOLDER”;
  • p[“externalTargetingValue”] = “TRIGGER_PLACEHOLDER”;

Once these parameters are added to your ad tag, replace “DATA_CLASSIFICATION_PLACEHOLDER” in the p[“externalTargeting”] parameter with the desired classification name from the data classification list above. Then replace “TRIGGER_PLACEHOLDER” with a hard-coded value or a macro in your DSP.

Example of a Modified Ad Tag

Examples by Business Type

Retail

Example Feed

Example of Category Targeting

Suppose you are running an online shopping mall and want to promote clothing products for a specific period. In this case, you can use External Targeting to only display products with a category value of “Apparel” in your ads. 

First, ensure that the data field is automatically mapped to the Category column in your data feed. If the mapping didn’t happen automatically, you could use another available data field that is not already mapped to columns in your data feed. Also, you can drag and map the data field already mapped to other columns to the column you want to target.

Example of a Modified Ad Tag

For external targeting to work using the example ad tag above, you need to map the “Category” data field to the Category column in your data feed.

Example of Subcategory targeting

Suppose you can’t find an exactly matched data field for the data in your data feed you want to target. Then, you can use any available data from the data classification list or move around the data field already used and remap the column in the feed. 

For example, if you want to display only dresses among apparel products, but there is no “Subcategory” data field, you can use a data field not mapped to a column in your data feed, such as “Brand” in this example. You can also drag a data field currently mapped to another column, such as the “Category” data field, to map it to the “Subcategory” column.

Example of a Modified Ad Tag

Auto

Example Feed

If you want to show only new vehicles in your ad, map the “Condition” data field to your data feed’s “Condition” column.

Example of a Modified Ad Tag

Modify the ad tag as shown below. You can pass the vehicle’s condition to Adacado in the ad request by manually inserting an external targeting value or, if possible, by using a macro in your DSP.

Real Estate

Example Feed

If you want to show houses in a specific location, you can target them using location data from your data feed. For example, if you’re going to target based on zip code, map the Postal Code data field to the Zip code column in your feed and generate product data.

After completing your creative work and product data generation, add a data classification name for the “Postal Code” data field in the p[“extraTargeting”] parameter. Next, you need to manually insert a target zip code value that matches what’s in your data feed or use a macro in your DSP to dynamically pass the zip code to Adacado in the ad request.

The ad will display the house in New York in this example.

Hotel

Example Feed

If you want to display specific hotels based on audience ID, include the audience ID in the individual hotel’s product data by mapping the data field to the AudienceID column in the data feed. In the example below, “Product ID” is mapped to the AudienceID column in the data feed.

Here is an example ad tag for the above scenario, showing the San Francisco hotel for the audience ID 12345. To display dynamic hotel ads based on audience ID, you need to add a macro from your DSP to the p[“externalTargetingValue”] parameter and pass the dynamic target audience IDs to Adacado.

You can also use airport codes (IATA), city, or country values as a trigger to target hotels in a specific location.

External Targeting with Multiple Frames in the Ad

If you add more than one template to show multiple products in your ad, but there aren’t enough target products, by default, the ad will show the target products first, followed by any products in your product data.

Suppose you select a campaign objective like “Last Viewed & Category” for your retail campaign and use external targeting. If there aren’t enough target products to display, it cascades down to the secondary target, the category of the targeted products, and then shows the products from that category.  

If you have questions, please reach out to us anytime at support@adacado.com.