Context + Creative: The Special Sauce of Digital Advertising

Contextual Intelligence is a hot topic right now — especially as third-party cookies and identifiers continue to decline in usage and popularity. But what is truly needed for contextual intelligence to be effective in targeting audiences online and helping brands reach their revenue targets?

“Creative and context have a really great marriage that can help brands reach those goals,” said GumGum CEO Phil Schraeder at the IAB Brand Disruption Summit 2020. The panel, Context + Creative: The New Power Couple of Digital Advertising discussed how contextual intelligence, paired with the right creative can make all the difference when it comes to capturing user attention.

The cohesion between context and creative

GumGum leverages its contextual analysis engine, Verity, in order to place contextually relevant ads within the right contexts. Verity uses both AI machine learning and natural language processing to scan a page and find opportunities to place the right ads in the right places. For a campaign with Starbucks, GumGum engaged coffee lovers on the go with contextually relevant ads to boost traffic on the Starbucks mobile app. With high-impact creative ads that were both engaging and respectful of the user, GumGum achieved great success, driving engagement and increasing user interest.

Context needs to be part of the game plan

The fact of the matter is that context is everywhere. With users constantly churning out diverse and far-reaching content, it has become essential to understand what it all means — the bias, tone, the neutrality, the satire all needs to be determined in order to target users effectively. And, not all users are the same. A standardized image, with one message just won’t do the trick. Users approach content online within specific moments and time, with certain emotions and all of that has to be kept top of mind when determining contextual relevance and designing creative elements.

Be in a contextual environment, not a safe environment

While keyword targeting seems like the typical method to keep brands safe, it often leads to missed opportunities. Brands must now approach safety in a more context-forward way. When Covid-19 hit, blanketed keyword targeting greatly reduced the number of publisher pages on which brands could advertise, removing both positive and negative Covid-19 related content. You can be cost-efficient and advertise at scale in a contextual environment, rather than a safe one.

For brands looking for alternatives to cookieless targeting, context + creative is an effective way to engage audiences. And most importantly, it drives results.

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