Ebay UK in personalisation drive as it launches ‘industry first’ targeting tools for brands

Ebay is introducing a new set of targeting tools that provide advertisers with more in depth personalisation as the brand hopes to become an industry leader in predictive targeting.

The online marketplace brand is introducing two new Christmas-themed shopper segments for marketers, which eBay says will take its targeting “to an entire new level”.

The two audience segments, which will launch tomorrow (20 November), are ‘Sales Shoppers’ and ‘Premium Shoppers’. Built on behavioural insights, the segments allow brands to target shoppers in a more personalised manner.

It will also enable brands to engage with specific customer types, with early additions including parents. Utilising search and purchase insights, Ebay can segment shoppers into five distinct stages of early parenthood – expectant parents; new parents; tiny tot parents (those with children up to two years old); toddler parents (with two and three year old children); and pre-school parents (those with 4+ year old children).

“With this type of targeting, we look at how our customers have interacted with our eBay pages, what they looked for and what they found. Based on profiling, we can then predict in future whether they will, or somebody like them, perform a similar action,” eBay’s advertising commercial director Alessandra Di Lorenzo told Marketing Week.

“Everybody is talking about predictive targeting but this is one of the first true examples of it that we’ve seen in UK.”

While the brand already offers classic targeting, including key word targeting, demographic targeting and location targeting, the new shopper segments are part of a continued drive by the business to increase personalisation.

“At Ebay the customer experience is paramount and advertising is part of this ambition. The more personalised the message is, the more relevant it is, therefore the better the customer experience is,” she explained.

While the segments are predominantly targeted around sales shoppers throughout the festive period, the brand is hoping to roll out more tailored segments in 2016.

“For next year we have the ambition to take another 50 of these sets to market. They’ll be a variety of seasonally-tied segments, targeted around Valentine’s Day and Easter, alongside other sets,” Di Lorenzo said.

The brand also hopes that this project will have a broader impact on the industry and become an inspiration to others.

She concluded: “With the project, we’re trying to set an example for the industry. We want to be leaders and we have proven that in programmatic. This is the next big wave of innovation that we’d like to be known for and lead the industry into a new era of targeting.”


eBay’s Phuong Nguyen: Marketers are still targeting like it’s the 1950s

Phuong Nguyen

Marketing briefs still focus on engaging consumer segments, whether it’s “baby boomers,” the coveted millennial group or the consumers of the future, Gen Z. But demographic targeting doesn’t necessarily provide return on investment. Recently McDonald’s announced that it would stop focusing its marketing efforts on simply sweeping talk to millennials, but this remains an exception and not the rule across the industry.