The shopper path to purchase can happen extremely fast. Use programmatic advertising technology to take advantage of the digital path to purchase.

Speed Sells: How to Go From Hello to Good Buy Faster

The shopper path to purchase can go from zero to 60 quickly these days. The moment a consumer sees something he wants, he can take it home in a matter of hours — or minutes — thanks to click-and-collect and store pickup. To appeal to these shoppers, though, you need a digital ad engine that can get you in front of them at the right time. A digital ad engine can help you understand whether consumers are in the market for your brand or a product you sell and then capitalize on intent data while it’s hot — not days or weeks after they’ve made a purchase or the desire has passed. Today’s ad serving platforms use artificial intelligence optimization to get smarter with every campaign, changing directions while campaigns are still active to get the best possible outcome. The right tools will not only help you target and advertise to your best audience, but will also allow consumers to purchase without any friction. Here are three ways the right programmatic advertising technology helps you take advantage of the digital path to purchase.

Uses Data to Execute

Many companies currently use a siloed approach to ad execution. They have one platform for data and insights and another for the ad serving process. But working this way runs the risk of losing data in the porting process. For example, not all your cookies will match, or there might be other data mismatch issues. Plus, there’s a delay. Even if you have a 100% match rate, the fastest you’d move is three to four days. And by that time, the consumer is either no longer interested in your product or she’s already settled on the competition. When you use a platform that combines data and insights with ad delivery in one system, you can connect your customers to the right ad content in the blink of an eye.

Stays Dynamically Up to Date

You need a system that consistently reads signals to understand both long-term interest and short-term purchase intent. Then, the system should dynamically feed those insights into your ad campaign. While you might have a campaign that’s live for three to four weeks, you’ll have new consumers churn in and old consumers churn out every three to four days as their purchase intent waxes and wanes. The net result is a steady flow (with good volume) of interested buyers who want to put your product in their cart. So if a customer’s datasets indicate she’s in the market for a new SUV, you might want to advertise test drives for her favorite models with all of the features she’s shown she considers most important. But if you have to wait for the data as it moves between vendors and as your ad campaign waits to update, she’s likely already made a decision, and you’ve lost a customer.

Engages Buyers During Checkout

Today, ad serving platforms can’t stop once they gain someone’s attention. They also have to provide individuals with the execution tools to deliver an optimal customer experience. Conversational ads and add-to-cart opportunities allow you to pull engaged buyers to the checkout so that you don’t lose them the moment they have to leave their channel. For example, we worked with a West Coast auto dealership to help it identify the best buyers in the market for a midpriced family sedan. Once the ads engaged them, Valassis’ Unified Intent EngineTM enabled consumers to have curated AI conversations directly in the ad. So while the ad showcased the model, the consumer was free to ask about inventory, financing options, and more via the chatbot interface. In another example, Valassis helped a national cleaning products brand engage audiences interested in its cleaning product innovation. Then, consumers could automatically add the product to their cart for an online retailer or pick up in store for a big-box store — and consumers never had to leave their social media platforms. In today’s digital advertising landscape, speed sells. You can no longer afford to use ad serving tools that target consumers after they’ve already made a purchase or the moment they’re no longer interested. You need to reach them at the perfect time and make it easy for them to buy your product immediately. To learn more about how Valassis’ Unified Intent EngineTM can help your brand, contact us and let us know what questions you have.