There’s a funny TV commercial for Esurance in which a tiara-wearing, gown-clad beauty queen operates a backhoe at a construction site to the dismay of the panicked foreman, who exclaims, “You’re not Marge!” (Marge is presumably the usual backhoe operator.) “I’m sorta Marge,” the beauty queen says, and then goes on to recount the ways she’s like Marge, with perfect stage presence and a pageant-ready smile. This absurd scenario is used to illustrate Esurance’s message of the importance of custom pricing for insurance, and punctuated with the tagline “Sorta you isn’t you.” It’s brilliant.
Insurance isn’t the only place first-party data is important. It’s critical for audience targeting in mobile advertising as well. Lots of ad networks use the same third-party data sources (like BlueKai, Datalogix and others) to find and target the audience segments their clients are after. These data sources are rich and can improve campaign performance, but imagine how much more effective you could target your audience if you leveraged deeper insights that got at the core of a user. After all, sorta your audience isn’t your audience.
The First-Party Data Difference
Over the years, Phunware has built thousands of apps that have amassed over a hundred million downloads worldwide. As users interact with those apps and Phunware’s platform, they create what we call “events.” Events include app installs and opens, content viewed, alerts set, beacons interacted with, even Wi-Fi networks devices connect to. Phunware’s big data infrastructure does not directly associate these events with the users creating them; it merely records that the events happened—for each of the 625 million monthly active device IDs on Phunware’s platform. (Side note: Here at Phunware, we make sure that our data gathering methods are 100% compliant with industry standard guidelines, and we are certified with TRUSTe who has a rigorous data/opt-out review process. So rest assured, everything is kept kosher!)
In fact, each device ID on our platform creates over 70 unique Phunware-specific events per month—which means that the platform is continually getting smarter about who users are and what they want. Our team is constantly extracting useful information and building valuable audiences that our customers can target with their mobile advertising campaigns. For example, if a user has an app that was either built by Phunware or leverages Phunware’s mobile analytics tools, the platform is able to see what Wi-Fi networks that device connects to over time. By gathering the device IDs that have connected to Starbucks’ free Wi-Fi at least 1-2 times a week, we can build a set of device IDs that represent Starbucks brand loyalists. Those users will probably convert better for Starbucks mobile ads than other audience groups segmented because they “look like” Starbucks customers based on demographics or other data.
There are infinite possible segments like this, and they don’t just benefit advertisers. Yes, advertisers see better campaign performance when their ads reach the right consumers, but consumers also have happier mobile experiences when the advertising they see contains products and offers that are relevant to them.
For more information about how you can start leveraging Phunware’s proprietary data from the biggest mobile apps, contact our Audience Engagement team.