CPG Marketing Trends: iAd Targeting Pulls Data From iTunes

When it comes to targeting within Apple’s iAd network, Apple’s ability to target consumers based on the types of music, movies and audiobooks they download is differentiating them in the marketplace. Apple has begun to develop profiles for advertisers that will allow them to reach very specific segments. For example, to reach high income households, Apple directs advertisers to consumers who like alternative music, and health care and fitness apps.

But does it really work? In a recent AdAge article, Evan Krauss, exec VP-advertising sales for Shazam, which targeted love songs for Godiva on Valentine’s Day, says yes. There hasn’t been an instance where the placement hasn’t yielded results.

The challenge Apple is facing is their limited iAd inventory. Because advertisers have so few options on where and when to deliver a message, Apple is failing to deliver the right message at the right time combination advertisers strive for. This problem will slowly solve itself as more and more Apple devices hit the market since all devices from this point forward will carry the software that support iAds.

For brands interested, the limited availability comes at a hefty price. Rich media units that appear in context closer to apps than ads required a minimum of at least a $1 million spend. After a couple of months at that price, Apple dropped the minimum to $500,000, which is still more than double the allowance of a typical mobile ad budget.

Is your brand pushing the envelope enough with your current digital campaigns to succeed in such a limited inventory environment? Is the specific targeting Apple’s unique data offers worth the investment to only reach consumers with Apple products?

For brands who want to be one step ahead, this is a great opportunity to invest in a medium that has the potential to grow exponentially. But for those brands that have strict budgets to keep in mind and awareness goals for their campaigns to reach, this option may be best saved for the coming years once the iAd network has had time to grow and be better understood.


Brad is an expert in private label and challenger brand food marketing for Barkley, an integrated marketing and advertising agency. He specializes in working with manufacturing-driven food companies that have aspirations to develop a consumer insight-led strategies to help drive innovation and growth.

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