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Turning Back the Clock on Social Data

The way consumers use the internet to seek information and the explosion of social networks has created opportunities for savvy marketers to crave out new niches in reaching target audiences.  Social data is relatively real-time data, meaning marketers typically target consumers based on current interests.  However, the up-in-coming trend of historical intent targeting is changing the way social data is used and how marketers are reaching their target audiences.

A recent Adweek article stated that LocalResponse, a social ad firm, has partnered with the social data platform Datasift, a Twitter certified data provider, to access historical tweets dating back to 2009.  LocalResponse mines old tweets for signals of intent to be used to target desktop and mobile display ads.  Launched in early 2012, LocalResponse’s intent-targeting tool only digs through social data that users have made public, which are typically tweets.

I think this is exceptional news for marketers.  This new capability will allow marketers to access valuable information and in turn craft meaningful targeted messages to consumers.  Through historical social data, marketers will be able to uncover insightful consumer behavior patterns and then target consumers throughout their life stages.  The ability to access tweets from past years will also help advertisers keep their target segments fresh.

The downfall is that marketers may have a hard time deciding if a consumer’s tweet about a product three years ago is still relevant in the eyes of the consumer today.  Another downfall is that there may be a backlash from consumers as they may feel marketers are trying to capitalize on their past personal tweets.

Although there is not any solid data yet on what kind of marketing results will come from historical intent targeting, I think using historical social data will significantly transform how marketers reach target consumers.  Historical intent targeting has the potential to be a powerful tool and marketers should keep a close eye on this emerging trend.

How do you feel about the concept of using historical social data to target consumers?  Share your thoughts!

Here is the Adweek article for more details on historical intent targeting: http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/you-probably-forgot-old-tweet-advertisers-havent-144339

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