Display & OOH

Why IP Targeting Leads to Smarter Display Advertising

By Tinuiti Team

Ever since the first display ad in 1994, advertising agencies have been using this sophisticated technology with impressive results. But display campaigns can sometimes feel like black boxes. Where are the dollars going? Who’s managing the campaigns? At Tinuiti, we believe a successful campaign requires both transparency and visibility.

In the following article, we discuss how IP targeting combined with display advertising allows marketers to reach the right customers with the right message to significantly increase brand awareness and ROI.

What Is IP Targeting?

Let’s start with the fundamentals of IP Targeting including what it is and how it works.

Different than pixels or cookies, IP targeting is an internet marketing technique that allows advertisers to leverage Internet Protocol (IP) addresses to deliver unique, hyper-personalized content to a mobile or desktop user, based on their location. 

Combining IP targeting with display advertising allows marketers and advertisers to reach the customers they want where they already browse online. IP targeting includes practices like IP retargeting — showing ads on other sites and in an ad network after leaving your site.

Imagine being able to display banner ads to a specific home or business based on their IP address and location. IP targeting allows you to reach the customers you want where they already browse online. It’s an extremely cost-effective practice, as it allows you to reach 100% of your target audience with minimal budget waste. 

Is IP Targeting Legal?

As with any breakthrough approach, there are criticisms of IP targeting and its relationship to personal privacy. Like cookies in the internet era, consumers are not always keen on marketers using their private data to sell their products and services. Moreover, there is no certain answer as to whether or not IP addresses are personal information, so it is not treated as such. In fact, in order to perform the function of an IP address — interacting with public sources, such as websites — this information, in most cases, actually needs to be public. 

Wherever you decide to roll out your IP targeting strategy, make sure that you are complying with the data privacy and data targeting regulations in your country. 

IP Targeting Best Practices

As with any advertising campaign, defining clear goals and your marketing criteria is of utmost importance. Ask yourself: What am I hoping to accomplish with this campaign? Who am I going to target? Where will I target them? If you already have these ideas in mind, great!

Let’s take a deeper look at 5 specific use cases for IP targeting provided by Amber Usmani, Associate Director Programmatic Display at Tinuiti:

1. Households

Use IP targeting to target families, married couples, partners, or even college campuses. Depending on the type of campaign and who is in the households, you may be able to use the same creative across different IPs.

2. Businesses

If you’re looking to target a specific business, why not go straight to the source and target their IPs? If you’re looking to market to employees or consumers of a specific business, use IP targeting to draw in their attention. 

3. Demographics

If you want to target a certain age or gender demographics associated with the IP addresses you are targeting, use this insight to help tighten your ad creative. 

4. Specific industries

Job gatherings or meetups in your area? Use IP targeting to reach industry-specific professionals and offer them your services.

5. Dayparting

If your product/offer is relevant to a specific time of day or if you know your audience is most engaged or active online at a certain day or week/time of day, layer on additional dayparting to maximize your message. 
While these general categories work for almost all advertising campaigns (targeting is an integral advertising practice, after all), they are especially relevant when you are able to narrow down the specificity of your intended audience and messaging to a granularity never seen before.

“There are also opportunities to personalize your creative messaging at scale with the use of dynamic creative optimization (DCO) solutions. This would allow you to leverage creative templates and personalize them at scale (such as copy, imagery, or CTA) while streamlining your creative production process,” Usmani says.


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