Sears Tries Turnaround With Data Mine; Obama Loves Tags – Pass It On; DSP MediaMath’s Euro Expansion

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Mining The Data

The Wall Street Journal covers a new loyalty program from Sears called “Shop Your Way Rewards” which essentially re-targets online shoppers in-store (you know, offline) and “promises customers generous freebies for repeat purchases, as long as they agree to share personal shopping data with the company.” Even if it’s not the most inventive program, the traditionally-minded Sears may have turned a corner led by the former CEO of Avaya who “wants to use technology – and the reams of customer data retailers can mine – to give shoppers exactly what they want.” Read it (subscription).

The Obama Marketing Stack

The campaign for U.S. President Barack Obama is apparently worried about all the ad tags running around on its campaign website. ClickZ’s Kate Kaye reports that new campaign spending disclosures show the Obama team has added tag management to its 2012 initiatives: “In addition to buying $3 million worth of online ads in January, the Obama camp paid two-year-old Chicago area ad tech company BrightTag $5,000.” Will Obama offer an end-to-end ad tech solution? Read more.

DSP Expansion In Europe

MediaMath’s Erich Wasserman tells Ciaran O’Kane about the fine points of MediaMath’s Open and private marketplace strategies on ExchangeWire. Also, Wasserman discusses continued European expansion for the demand-side platform company: “On the business side, we continue our aggressive expansion into the major media markets in Europe. Our oldest client in Europe is in Paris and we’ve established a great book of business in France. We’ll also be aggressively expanding into the German market – watch for news on that score shortly.” Read more.

Retargeting Ways

On Marketing Land, Shelley Ellis takes a crack at dissecting the different flavors of remarketing/retargeting/remessaging. In discussing Microsoft’s Bing “remessaging” product, she ruminates, “Advertising is already integrated into a number of those products including Xbox games. Having access to large databases of users across a variety of interests could offer opportunities to build the Bing Remessaging audience in the near future.” Read ’em all.

The Intent Harvest

kbs+p ventures founder Darren Herman makes his case for why intent “harvesting” solutions are critical – and why his growing venture group is looking to fund them – in a post on his personal blog. Herman writes, “Data to enhance targeting generally should win out on a media plan before any time of blind or proxy-audience buy. The picture below illustrates this notion. The old way of buying media was to start broad and then narrow down based on performance. Now, it’s about starting narrow because we can, and then getting broader if it’s needed and budget allows. It’s not that marketers are spending less, it’s that they are more refined in their targeting.” See the intent.

Mobile Display Talk

On Street Fight, CEO Eli Portnoy of Google and IA-funded ThinkNear, a hyper-local mobile ad platform, looks at what’s wrong with mobile display. He offers, “If you talk to industry insiders, the ‘smart’ money is on re-creating the cookie business on mobile. Without getting too deep into how advertising on the web works, suffice it to say that it revolves around creating profiles of your activity online and serving relevant ads based on the intent you have broadcast by the sites you have visited. For both technical and intuitive reasons, this approach won’t work on mobile, but people keep trying.” He has other ideas.

What Is “Added Value”

On eBay-owned Fetchback’s blog, account executive Austin Leonard discusses what it means to provide “added value” to clients beyond free ad impressions. Given his company’s retargeting product, Leonard notes, “Here in the performance marketing space, it would seem that there is little room for added value, as every dollar spent must be tracked back to a CPA or ROI. Basically, what we are told by e-commerce departments is that every impression that is served that doesn’t result in a sale isn’t worth anything.” On the other hand –read more.

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