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  • Yvan Lamoureux

The Evolution of Social Media Targeting: Traditional vs. AI-Driven Approaches

In the realm of social media marketing, the ability to reach the right audience with the right message has always been paramount. Over the years, the strategies and tools for achieving this goal have evolved significantly, with traditional methods giving way to more sophisticated, AI-driven approaches. In this article, we'll explore the key differences between traditional social media targeting and the new AI-driven targeting, examining how each approach works and the benefits it offers to businesses.


Traditional Social Media Targeting: Casting a Wide Net

Traditional social media targeting relies on demographic and psychographic data to identify and reach target audiences. Marketers create campaigns based on broad categories such as age, gender, location, interests, and behaviours. While this approach has been effective to some extent, it often involves a fair amount of guesswork and may not always yield the desired results.


One of the main limitations of traditional targeting is its inability to capture the nuances of individual preferences and behaviors. For example, a campaign targeting "women aged 25-35 interested in fitness" may miss out on subsegments within this group who have specific preferences or behaviours that differentiate them from the broader category.


Another challenge with traditional targeting is its static nature. Once a campaign is launched, it's difficult to make real-time adjustments based on how the audience is responding. Marketers have to rely on post-campaign analysis to identify areas for improvement, which can be time-consuming and may result in missed opportunities.


Despite these limitations, traditional social media targeting has its strengths. It's relatively easy to implement and doesn't require specialized knowledge or tools. It's also a cost-effective option for businesses with limited resources, as it can reach a large audience without the need for complex algorithms or data analysis.


AI-Driven Social Media Targeting: Precision and Personalization

In contrast to traditional targeting, AI-driven targeting leverages advanced algorithms and machine learning to deliver more precise and personalized campaigns. AI analyzes vast amounts of data to identify patterns and trends, allowing marketers to target audiences with a high degree of accuracy.


One of the key advantages of AI-driven targeting is its ability to segment audiences based on a wide range of factors, including browsing behaviour, purchase history, social interactions, and even real-time data such as location or device type. This level of granularity allows marketers to create highly targeted campaigns that resonate with specific segments of their audience.


AI also enables dynamic targeting, meaning campaigns can be adjusted in real time based on how users are interacting with them. For example, if a user shows interest in a particular product, AI can automatically adjust the campaign to show similar products or offer personalized recommendations.


Another strength of AI-driven targeting is its ability to uncover hidden patterns and insights that may not be apparent through traditional analysis. By analyzing large datasets, AI can identify correlations and trends that can inform future campaigns and improve overall marketing strategy.


The Benefits of AI-Driven Targeting

The shift towards AI-driven targeting represents a significant advancement in social media marketing, offering several key benefits:

  1. Increased Precision: AI can target audiences with a level of precision that was previously unattainable, resulting in higher engagement and conversion rates.

  2. Improved Personalization: AI can create personalized experiences for users, increasing the relevance and effectiveness of marketing campaigns.

  3. Real-Time Optimization: AI can adjust campaigns in real-time based on user interactions, ensuring that messages are always relevant and timely.

  4. Data-Driven Insights: AI can uncover valuable insights from large datasets, helping marketers make informed decisions and improve overall strategy.


Embracing the Future of Social Media Targeting

As social media continues to evolve, so too must our approach to targeting and engaging audiences. While traditional targeting methods have served us well, the rise of AI-driven targeting offers a glimpse into the future of social media marketing.


By leveraging the power of AI, marketers can create more precise, personalized campaigns that resonate with audiences on a deeper level. While the transition to AI-driven targeting may require some investment in terms of technology and expertise, the benefits far outweigh the costs.


The future of social media targeting lies in embracing AI-driven approaches that enable us to connect with our audiences in more meaningful and impactful ways. As we continue to refine and innovate our targeting strategies, we can look forward to a future where every interaction is personalized, every message is relevant, and every campaign is a success.




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This blog is not meant to provide specific advice or opinions regarding the topic(s)

discussed above. Should you have a question about your specific situation, please

discuss it with your CWC marketing advisor.


Crankworks Creative Inc. is a full-service marketing and advertising firm in the Greater Waterloo Area. We primarily service all of Ontario and the rest of Canada, the US and Australia virtually. Our team provides marketing audits and reviews, brand equity assessments, and tactical marketing and advertising support for both traditional and digital media. We provide specialized services and expertise for the Construction, Industrial/Commercial Building, General Contractors, Subcontractors, Procurement professionals, Facilities Management, Manufacturers, Suppliers, Allied services, and general advisory services.


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