How Retail Media is Becoming the New Face of Contextual Targeting



Retail media is a revolutionary means of unlocking brand-safe, hyper-targeted advertising. What makes it so special? It does not rely on third-party cookies, which makes it a lifesaver for a plethora of businesses that are craving new ways to acquire and retain customers.



The rise and fall of Big Data


Contextual targeting was in high demand for nearly two decades, gaining momentum at the beginning of the 2000s when Google AdSense came into play. But over the past 5 years, behavioral targeting and Big Data were winning the competition. What has changed? These methods are no longer relevant due to the death of the cookie, and contextual targeting is coming into the limelight again.


Indeed, it is the most reasonable solution for digital advertising in the post-cookie world. The fact is, it ensures personalised user experience that has gained the utmost importance nowadays. Here are the essential reasons why contextual targeting was brought back to the forefront.



Retail media is one of the most “contextual” forms of advertising


Retail media is the new face of contextual advertising — after all, what can be more “contextual” than targeting customers at an online store? Compared to the traditional approach, retail media offers enhanced brand safety and suitability. Let’s dig deeper into the reasons for such a success.


1. High relevance


With retail media, you can be sure that your prospects will see only relevant ads shown next to the content they are searching for. Moreover, today’s advanced technology allows for a much deeper understanding of your audience than the one created by mundane keyword research. It is now possible to grasp the sentiment of a particular page to see whether it complies with the initial request and whether it ensures a decent level of data protection.


Imagine you are selling iPhones and are using retail media to attract more customers. In the past, there was no guarantee that search results wouldn’t have included an article where an iPhone could have been described as a less advantageous alternative to an Android phone. This could have happened if such an article had contained the crucial keywords. Today, your users are unlikely to see irrelevant information since the search has become more advanced and takes into account the general sentiment of the article. Artificial intelligence (AI) will detect negativity and remove such a piece from the list of available options, even if it includes the same keywords.


2. Zero reliance on third-party cookies


What worked yesterday doesn’t work today, so it is time to refuse from heavy reliance on third-party cookies. Retail media ads do not target specific people; nevertheless, the true power of contextual advertising lies in meeting their unique needs.


3. Incredible customer experience


Modern users are much more prone to interacting with contextually relevant advertisements than with those based on behavioral analytics. Thus, collecting first-party data instead of relying on third-party stats is a forward-looking approach that will pay off in the long run. Unlike cookie-based advertising, such a strategy does not create a creepy feeling of being watched by Big Brother, at the same time allowing for a proper investigation of your users’ interests.



Retail media is the most natural form of native advertising


As you can see, the approach applied by retail media feels quite natural and unobtrusive. There are various native-style ad types that you can use to build smooth communication with your audience. They include:

  • in-feed advertisements;

  • online video advertorials;

  • content suggestion widgets;

  • sponsored and branded materials.


All of the options listed above are closely associated with search results. What are the most efficient ways to target ads? CitrusAd has prepared a few examples to illustrate how the theory is applied in practice.


  • First, it is very easy to launch targeted Product Ad campaigns and manage them on CitrusAd’s platform. Numerous business owners claim that it has a user-friendly interface suitable for both non-tech-savvy and technically literate audiences. Plus, you can always address the customer support team with an urgent question. Have a look at the amazing results of Unilever campaign:



  • Second, it is really easy to activate Target Product Ads on the platform. You will see it go live in just 24-48 hours on Target.com and on the Target app. Here’s an example of what it looks like:



  • Third, CitrusAd provides full transparency and ensures detailed, real-time reporting. It will allow you to keep track of your media’s performance and make the necessary adjustments and improvements based on robust analytics. You will be able to closely study search term statistics, campaign breakdowns, pacing visibility, and other essential metrics as shown in the screenshot below:





















  • Moreover, you will be able to streamline your business processes with CitrusAd’s automated solutions. For instance, it’s easy to select the appropriate keywords and products, target the right category, and build an effective bidding strategy. It is also possible to launch an "automated campaign" feature in just one click.






















  • Finally, CitrusAd ensures enhanced protection to keep your budget safe. For instance, the platform’s AI will detect and flag low-performance campaigns with insufficient click-through rates and make sure that out-of-stock SKUs will no longer serve. It will also highlight top-performing products and teams.

















Why is CitrusAd’s platform a good investment?


An increasing number of companies are investing in Citrus Ad’s retail media as they quickly get a decent ROI. Those include Unilever, RB Health, Treasury Wine Estates, Swisse:




If you decide to join in, too, your native ad investment will be solely designated to the media. In other words, you won’t be charged any additional fees, so you will get the most out of the collaboration with CitrusAd.