3 Success Stories of EXTREMELY Targeted Ads

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Filed Under Marketing & Advertising

Anyone who has some experience in online advertising will tell you that untargeted ads don't work. They're a bad idea that yields next-to-nothing results. You want your website or product to be in front of the people that matter, because let's face it, a million eyeballs on your advertisement won't mean anything if none of them convert. Buying untargeted ads isn't just a waste of money, it could even annoy users and ruin your brand name in the process. This is why it's extremely important to identify your target audience when running online ads.

If you already recognize the importance of online targeted ads (and you're in fact using it in your business), then consider taking your advertising campaign to a more extreme level. Instead of targeting a certain demographic, why not zero in on specific individuals and tailor your ad's message to these few people in particular? Over the past couple of years, more and more businesses have used very specific ad campaigns to push their brands.

Check out these three companies that effectively thought out of the box and took their targeted campaigns to the next level. Read on below and see how their efforts not only got the attention of their target audience, but some of thee campaigns even received great media coverage at the same time.

1. Voyurl Used Google AdWords to Zero In On Angel Investors – A little background on the company: Voyurl is a clickstreaming service that gives users information on what their friends are browsing in real-time. It's a plugin that records a user's browsing activity while sharing it with that user's friends at the same time.

In 2010, while still in stealth mode, the company was looking for funding and decided to get the attention of potential investors with the use of Google ads specifically targeted at them. Case in point: Delicious founder Joshua Schachter, who also happened to be an angel investor at that time, was called out by Voyurl.

TechCrunch wrote about the incident and reported that Schachter was performing a Google search on himself (who hasn't?) when he came across an ad that read, "Hi Joshua. We're VOYURL. We Love Delicious. And We'd Love to Talk!"

Needless to say, the ad definitely got him to sit up. According to TechCrunch, Schachter said, "Well, that's one way to get a potential investor's attention. I'm either impressed or creeped out."

Of course, aside from getting their message seen by a potential investor, Voyurl also managed to get their name published on the popular TechCrunch blog, which also got them a lot of hits in the process.

2. Movember Used Facebook Ads to Get the Attention of Mashable Staff


Movember targets Mashable


Movember is a campaign that aims to raise awareness and funds for men's health issues. It involves men growing a "Mo" (moustache) for 30 days in order to serve as walking, talking billboards for Movember. This takes place during the month of November, where men start off clean-shaven on the 1st and start growing their Mo for the rest of the month, while raising funds as the days progress.

The campaign is already pretty well-known as it is, but it got a whole lot of extra attention thanks to a well-placed Facebook advertisement. On November 10, 2011, Mashable CEO Pete Cashmore himself posted a screenshot of Movember's ad on his own Facebook profile. The ad, entitled "Stachable" was focused particularly on people who worked at Mashable and read: Hey Mashable! Help a friend raise 'mo money for Movember! Consider donating today!"

Cashmore was impressed, and even labeled the campaign as "smart." Naturally, his friends and subscribers saw the post as well, and the Movember campaign was able to garner more publicity (and hopefully more funds and awareness).

3. Currency Banknotes iPhone App Targeted Apple Employees in Particular – The Currency Banknotes app is a currency converter that also displays banknote images. TechiXoft, the company that developed the app knew that one sure-fire way for the app to get downloads is for it to be featured in the iTunes App Store. Since the Apple staff are the ones that pick the apps that get featured, the TechiXoft team decided to run a Facebook ad campaign specifically targeting people that worked at Apple.

Lo and behold, some time after the campaign, Currency Banknotes was featured in the Finance Category's "What's Hot" list on iTunes, resulting in a spike of downloads for the TechiXoft.

Why They Work
The success of extremely targeted ads lies on the fact that people want to be recognized. These types of ads work very well because they speak directly to the user, as opposed to most ads that only partially or vaguely do so. Think about it. Would you choose to follow the advice of someone who babbles at random people, or would rather listen to someone who knows or seems to "get" you?

Additionally, extremely targeted ads are still considered new at this stage. People notice these types of ads because they're unique and you don't see them everyday. With that in mind, if you're reading this and you're thinking of running an extremely targeted ad campaign, you should get started as soon as possible, before the rest of the Internet marketers out there figure it out and everyone starts doing it.

About the author
Francesca Nicasio
Francesca Nicasio
Francesca is the founder of Credible Copywriting and has written for several organizations, including Internet start-ups, advertising agencies, and small businesses, just to name a few. She has helped individuals and entities put their names and messages out there by producing quality works in the form of articles, web content, video scripts, and more. Touch base with her at: or visit her website at: - Read more stories from .
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