5 Tools Brands Can Use to Create Socially Targeted Ads

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dataIn a single day, a tech-savvy twenty-something might tweet about a yoga class, check-in at Target, ask friends on Facebook to recommend a local cafe, and post photos on Instagram from inside Whole Foods. Individually, these social media updates might not mean much. But collectively, they can be a useful tool for advertisers trying to get a deeper look inside the minds of their local customers.

Marketers hoping to capitalize on the vast amounts of data consumers post publicly online are increasingly using social media to inform their online targeting efforts. Socially targeted ads are relevant and contextual, and they’re able to carry over from mobile to desktop. Here are five tools that merchants can use to create socially targeted ads.

1. LocalResponse: Respond to social intent.
LocalResponse specializes in intent marketing, leveraging the millions of updates that consumers post on social media each day as a way to drive targeted awareness of brands. For example, companies like Starbucks or Peet’s Coffee could use LocalResponse to ensure their ads show up on the desktops of any consumers who tweet about being sleepy or tired. Similarly, a person who complains about doing his taxes on Facebook might see a TurboTax banner ad show up on his screen the next time he clicks over to CNN.com. LocalResponse operates on a CPM model.

2. 33Across: Target users based on their social personas.
33Across gives brands a way to leverage the social graph outside of traditional networks like Facebook. Brands can identify their target audiences with real-time data, and then segment audiences for advertising based on “social personas.” This data is helpful in generating information about what the anonymous users in each ‘persona’ are most likely to be sharing, reading, and searching for online. It can be reliably used for targeting through online ad exchanges, in addition to social media.

3. Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud: Turn social conversations into customer engagement.
Salesforce has acquired a number of socially focused marketing platforms over the last few years, and combined them to create a comprehensive suite of socially targeted advertising tools. Using Salesforce’s Marketing Cloud, brands can listen to what people are saying about their services and products online. Based on what they hear, they can then build optimized social campaigns integrated with that customer data. These integrated campaigns can ultimately be published across Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and a brand’s own website. Basic Marketing Cloud packages start at $5,000 per month.

4. 140 Proof: Uniting audience data to indicate brand affinity.
140 Proof offers social advertising technology that brands can use to create ads that are based on public interest data and specific demographic “personas.” Ads are targeted based on the platform’s own Blended Interest Graph, which combines interest graphs from Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare, Instagram, and other popular networks and uses the data to create a scalable social ad platform. The ads that brands develop with 140 Proof appear in the top 50 social applications across all platforms, along with a brand’s own website and Facebook wall. 140 Proof uses a CPM pricing model, and also does “lower-funnel search campaigns” on a CPC basis.

5. RadiumOne: Target ads with an added audience intelligence layer.
RadiumOne is an ad network that uses “social and behavioral signals from across the web and mobile” to help brand advertisers target their online ads. The company has built an audience intelligence layer called ShareGraph to continuously analyze “sharing events” on social networks. It then uses the information from these events for audience segmenting. Brands can use ShareGraph to deliver their ads to customers in the exact moment when relevant online discussions are taking place. RadiumOne operates on a CPM and CPC model.

Know of other platforms brands can use to create socially targeted ads? Leave a description in the comments.

Stephanie Miles is an associate editor at Street Fight.

Stephanie Miles is a journalist who covers personal finance, technology, and real estate. As Street Fight’s senior editor, she is particularly interested in how local merchants and national brands are utilizing hyperlocal technology to reach consumers. She has written for FHM, the Daily News, Working World, Gawker, Cityfile, and Recessionwire.