Targeting an Event with Digital? What You Need to Know


Event based targeting is becoming extremely popular among digital marketers, mainly because it gives you an opportunity to have a presence at the event, even without a physically being there. But event targeting is not a one-size fits all strategy. Depending on what is capturing event attendees’ attention, different digital tools should be utilized to effectively market your business.

Targeting concerts, auto shows, or festivals? Go social. Think about how the person at the event is engaging online. Are they uploading pictures to social media, checking in online with friends, or posting a status of what they are doing? Then target them with newsfeed ads on social media like Facebook or Instagram with calls to action like “call now,” “get directions,” “message,” or “learn more.”  During more socially driven events, people aren’t just browsing online, so you have to reach them where they are posting.

Targeting a work convention, or vendors at a show? Go IP. Work conventions tend to have laptop bound professionals who are hopping on the free wifi to get online. With IP Targeting you can reach these people through the convention’s IP addresses or through the IPs of surrounding hotels and serve them an ad whenever they are browsing online.

Is targeting people post event important? Go Mobile Conquesting. With Mobile Conquesting your ads are placed on mobile apps and mobile web browsing sites within the area you want to reach.  This is done through a process call “geo-fencing” or targeting a specific (often small) target geo, like an event, to try and serve ads to people within the virtual fence.  You can then “geo-retarget” those attendees after the event is over and continue to serve them ads on their mobile devices. 

Event is over? Is there any way you can get back in front of that audience? Yes, with a digital marketing technique called Geo-Framing. Geo-framing goes back in time to previous events where we have captured people’s mobile Device ID’s, mapping those to their homes, and showing them ads now. If any ad was served to a person at the event, we can capture the Unique Device ID of that smartphone. It’s important that you only geo-frame an event up to six months in the past otherwise the data becomes compromised as people change their mobile devices and data changes.

Not all digital marketing techniques are created equal. In order to be the most effective, you must put yourself in the attendees’ shoes and think about how you would interact with the internet, then target them accordingly. 

The differences between Geo-Targeting, Geo-Fencing, Geo-Framing

You may have heard about a new tactic that’s becoming popular with advertisers seeking to reach people on their mobile devices…It’s called by some Geo-Farming. It’s also referred to as Geo-Retargeting. Why can’t everybody in the digital ad game agree to call things by the same name? Let’s save that for another day!  What is Geo-Farming/Geo-Retargeting?

Well there are a lot of “geo” terms when it comes to digital advertising, so let’s take a look at each:

Geo-Targeting:  This is delivering ads to people who meet specific targeting criteria AND who enter inside of a defined geographic area (city, zip radius). It hones in on specific consumer targeting criteria like demographics, behaviors, interests, keywords, AND where the person is located. So you are NOT showing the ads to EVERYONE inside the geographic area you have designated, they must ALSO meet the targeting criteria. This marketing tactic can be utilized to reach people on mobile phones or across all devices.

Geo-Fencing: Refers to drawing a virtual fence around a location and delivering ads to ANYONE who is inside that fence. For example, you could Geo-Fence a neighborhood, an event, business locations, even competitor locations. It uses a device’s global positioning system (GPS) or Internet Protocol (IP) address. Ads can be served on computer, tablet, or mobile devices as potential customers are browsing the web. Most people when they are referring to Geo-Fencing are looking for a very tight radius around a location. A misconception with Geo-Fencing is that once inside the fence you receive push notifications, or text messages to the device, which is not accurate. What Geo-Fencing does instead is show ads to the person inside the Geo-Fenced radius, if they are browsing websites or on apps that have ad inventory available.

Geo-Retargeting or Geo-Framing:  This tactic is just done on mobile devices and is a method of capturing mobile device IDs of users who have entered a defined geographic location (Geo-Fence), AND targeting them with ads after they have left the Geo-Fenced area, even if they never saw your ad while inside the Geo-Fence. For example, let’s say you are trying to reach homeowners. You could Geo-Fence a Home Expo Showcase and try to show those people ads during the event. However, many may not be actively browsing on their phones while there. Geo-Retargeting (Geo-Farming) enables you to reach those people after the event, by continuing to target them while they are at home or at work.

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Geo-Retargeting Lookalike:  With this tactic you can take your Geo-Retargeting a step further. In addition to following people after they leave the area you were Geo-Fencing and targeting them with ads, you can target those people’s neighbors and show them your ads as well. This is a great way to extend your message to people who are similar to those you were initially targeting.

How does Geo-Framing technology work?

Geo-Framing technology allow us to go back in time to previous events where we have captured people’s mobile Unique Device ID’s, map those Unique Device ID’s to their homes, and show those people ads now, across all devices.  It combines the best of aspects of Geo-Fencing and Household IP Targeting.

How does it work?

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If the event you are interested in targeting has already happened, but you still want to target those people, Geo-Framing comes to the rescue! As long as it is an event where Unique Device ID’s have been captured, it can be an event that happened up to 6 months ago! All you have to do is tell us the address where the event took place and the dates. We then let you know how many matches we have, and you can begin targeting those people.

How might a business use this type of technology? Maybe you want to target people who attended a home show, a sporting event, a fair, a concert, a convention – all of which took place months ago – no problem! Or maybe you want to target people who went to a shopping center on Black Friday and show them your ad – no problem!

How can we go back in time to target people from an event that already happened? We go through a four-step process to do Geo-Framing:

Who = Capturing unique device IDs. 

Where = Geographical coordinates (latitude & longitude) of that device.

When = A time stamp of when that device ID was captured.

Verify = Once verified and mapped to the household, your ad is shown on all devices – not just the mobile phone!

This is different from the other “geo” products so let’s review:

Geo-Fencing: Drawing a virtual fence around an area or location and showing your ad, to people inside that “fence.”

Geo-Retargeting:  Following people AFTER they leave the geo-fenced location and continuing to show them your ads.

Geo-Retargeting Lookalike:  Following people AFTER they leave the geo-fenced location and continuing to show them your ads as well as showing their neighbors your ads.

Geo-Framing:  To go back in time to previous events where we have captured people’s mobile Unique Device ID’s, map those Unique Device ID’s to their homes, and show those people ads now through the Household IP technology on all devices.