The two biggest traffic sources of the web that most business owners use these days is Facebook and Google, and they do two completely different things.


The Modern Yellow Pages

Google is like the modern version of the Yellow Pages. People are going there to solve a problem, but instead of letting your fingers do the walking, you let Google do the walking for you. And instead of taking three minutes to find something it happens in roughly .06 milliseconds. 

Google is the most perfect advertising mechanism in the history of mankind. And the reason why is because you only really pay for what you use. It’s really, really relevant, so your ad only shows up if someone’s searching for something. A lot of people think AdWords is too expensive, and in some ways it is if you run it directly out of the box. But if you know what you are doing and you know which levers to pull, and how to trim some of the waste out of it – then it’s amazing. It can become a money spewing cash machine.

The Modern Coffee Shop

Facebook is more like a coffee shop, where people are just going to hang out, but you can grab their attention. And now you can put your content directly in amongst their news feed and you can also put it off to the right hand side as advertising.  Getting granular on
 Facebook is also an amazing opportunity, because never before in the history of mankind have you been able to target on such on such a granular level. So for example, females between the ages of 26 and 38 who live in Sydney or Melbourne and who are not on part of that list, and who are interested in equestrian horse riding. . .

Never before have you been able to get that granular with your targeting. If you think about display marketing, which is advertising using banner ads as a general rule,  previously you used to have to advertise to people in this state or this city who are interested in that general topic. That’s as good as it was before, and then Facebook has changed that whole thing. In the USA they have bought a whole bunch of what they call “big data” and so now you can get really granular with your targeting (almost in a ‘big brother’ stalker way).

For example you can can target advertising to a female aged 26-38, who lives in this San Francisco, is interested in Equestrian Horse Riding, and who earns more than 75 grand a year, and has a credit card.  So you can see how powerful it’s getting and how you can target direct buyers in your market.

Bigger than Facebook and Google combined

The third biggest traffic source of the web is DSP’s. Most people don’t know about this, it’s mainly really just agencies and Uber marketing geeks. DSP’s means Demand Side Platforms. Basically, it’s like a trading desk where you can buy traffic wholesale in enormous traffic volumes. So this is really bigger than Google and Facebook put together, because it uses both of them as just part of its traffic sources.

How it works:

Let’s start at the top: so you as an advertiser, you buy traffic from the trading desk (which is, in this case the DSP, Demand Side Platform like  SiteScout is just like an AdWords interface that you log into. Site Scout isn’t the only DSP, it’s just got the best user interface and is growing really, really fast. buy traffic directly from exchanges and so they can be buying traffic from Google, they can be buying traffic from Facebook or Rubicon or a whole bunch of others.

Then, individual people who have websites (say for example, their blogs) saying, “Yeah, you know what? I’m happy to advertise, to sell this ad space,” and so the whole channel flows down. You can use DSP’s to advertise to people who are roughly this age, in roughly that town, who are roughly interested in this, that kind of thing. But it’s not as exact as Facebook. But you can still do interest targeting and geographical targeting.

The Sleeping Giant of Traffic – Facebook Atlas People Marketing

This is about to change the game big time – Facebook has bought an Ad Server called Atlas. What this means is that very soon you’ll be able to easily target those exact same people on Facebook (so the lady 26 to 38 who’s interested in this, and that kind of thing) when she leaves Facebook and just navigates around the web and show her your banner ads.

You just imagine how enormous that’s going to be – you’ve got the granular targeting of Facebook, but anywhere on the web. That’s a big game changer and they’ll do it all by using a combination of cookies and Facebook Ids that are logged in on the device, because they’ll know that you are that person and you’re part of that audience and as you navigate around the web. They call this ‘People Marketing’. So, you’re not just marketing audiences you’re marketing to individual people (you don’t know who those individuals are, but they do and then that information is hidden from you).


More to come later in in 2015

I think you’ll hear a lot more about this area later in 2015. It’s still to be known how they’re going to dish up ads with it. So, hopefully they make it self-serve ads like Google AdWords ads and like Facebook ads, so that you do not have to go off to a graphic designer and get banner ads created and all that kind of thing. I think if you can make the ads yourself, their adoption of this whole thing will be much bigger. But I’m sure they’ve thought of that type of stuff.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this – will you start to use this in your business? how do you think it will change your advertising results? Would you expect to see conversion increase dramatically with this kind of targeting?