Millennials expect more value, less disruptive user experiences from ads.

For advertisers, building brand awareness is essential to your quest for undying brand loyalty which, we hope, turns into never ending sales. You want to cut through the noise, connect with your audience, and get them engaged.

But the fact of the matter is that traditional “spray and pray” marketing just don’t work anymore. We know it’s expensive, often wasteful, and can potentially have the exact opposite effect of what you want for your brand. If your ads are being ignored by consumers, they might as well be invisible.

Traditional “Spray and Pray” Marketing Doesn’t Work on Millennials

Take the Millennial consumer. Born between 1980 and 2000, they are the biggest generation in U.S. history (92 million). According to Neilsen, they’re also the most trusting when it comes to advertising. Last year, the United States Census Bureau reported that Millennials now outnumber Baby Boomers, representing more than a quarter of the U.S.’s population. To top it off, their makeup is more diverse. Millennials are the driving force of change for the global economy, yet Business Insider reports that advertisers are failing to reach them.

*Infographic via Goldman Sachs
*Infographic via Goldman Sachs

The reasons aren’t exactly shocking. Daniel Newman, Principal Analyst and Founding Partner at Futurum, discussed in an article on Forbes stating that “millennials don’t want to be talked at.” As one of the most tech savvy audiences out there today, “they are used to having control over the information in their day to day lives, and their interactions with brands online is no different. They want to control their messaging,” Newman explains.

Performance and Data is the Secret Formula

This is where Performance marketing and most importantly data is essential for cutting through the noise to actually engage Millennials.

Real-time audience profile data layered over campaigns enables advertisers to target dynamically, based on purchaser intent and behaviour. Performance strategy enables advertisers to run campaigns based only on successful actions so ROI is actually measurable, down to the click.

Millennials expect more value and better, less disruptive user experiences from ads.

“Layering data enables the exploration and prospecting window to be shortened. What that means is conversion data can be collected at early stages in the campaign so your focus can be shifted from identifying the audience to actually driving performance.”


Debrani Ghosh / Programmatic Client Services Director

Debrani Ghosh, Programmatic Client Services Director at ClearPier, tells us that “from a performance stand point, layering data enables the exploration and prospecting window to be shortened. What that means is conversion data can be collected at early stages in the campaign so your focus can be shifted from identifying the audience to actually driving performance.” Read: drive results equals drive more sales.

Ghosh, who has over a decade of media buying experience in the programmatic space working at independent trade desks and DSPs, also added that when applying data, we should also look beyond generic data like age and demo. Instead, create consumer profiles based on behavioral and contextual intent for more precise targeting.

Megan Sun, Director of Publisher Relations at ClearPier, explains, “A good example is when you know a user is conscious about organic, locally grown, ethical food choices and is in market for a car. Do you think they’re more likely to purchase a gas guzzler vehicle or an electric economy car? Looking at your data and using it to your advantage in campaign would make the user happier because you can deliver relevant ads, while boosting results in campaign performance.”

Relevance is Key to Engagement

If Millennials are pre-occupied with authenticity and controlling the information they receive, then advertisers should make it their top priority to personalize their ad targeting down to the creative level.


Sun also adds, “With growing budgets for online media versus traditional methods like print and radio, online advertising is being cluttered with irrelevant ads to the user. While big custom executions hit the user on endemic sites, targeting users based on their behavior increases ROI for advertisers. The practice of driving performance by layering data is beneficial to audiences because, ultimately, it produces more relevant ads that add to the user’s experience, even when they’re visiting non-endemic sites.”

Combining Data with Performance strategy means trackable results, less ad spend waste for advertisers, and superior audience targeting. In other words, advertisers need to get on the Data train to drive Performance. Show your ads to consumers only when they want to see it so you’re brand doesn’t get ignored. Then sit back, and watch the results roll in.

Want to learn how First-Party Data and Performance can drive your sales? Connect with our team at