TechBytes with Dorian Kim, VP, Retargeting and Programmatic Operations, AppLift

Dorian Kim, VP at AppLift

Dorian Kim
VP, Retargeting and Programmatic Operations, AppLift

Audience segmentation remains the most challenging aspects of building powerful targeting campaigns. Dividing population groups based on their interaction with products and devices are ways to segment the audience. The biggest questions today — what is the extent are their effectiveness and how would Marketing Technology companies cope with the ever-growing demand for attributable audience segmentation? Dorian Kim, VP, Retargeting and Programmatic Operations, AppLift, explains the core tenets of audience segmentation for the mobile-centric marketing technology ecosystem.

Tell us about your role at AppLift and the team and technology that you handle.

I am the VP of Retargeting and Programmatic Operations at AppLift. I oversee a global team of specialists and programmatic traders that implement audience strategies and optimize mobile in-app retargeting campaigns. AppLift owns and operates a mobile-first proprietary DSP that has a robust custom dynamic audience segmentation tool and proven performance driven algorithms.

How would you define Audience Segmentation from a mobile-Commerce point of view?

The first rule of any retargeting program is to accept that not all user behavior is the same within each vertical. There are three primary methods of activating Audience Segmentation; secure static CSV upload, MMP Audience Builder, and third, and most effective, is when mCommerce applications stream dynamic events. The relevant audience segmentation in mCommerce observes the user activity for frequency, and recency of visitation, and purchasing habit, or lack thereof. The dynamic events streams of users can be turned in to audience segmentation to re-engage a mobile customer not only to perform the initial purchase but continued purchases.

How can mobile retargeting automation help meet data privacy and transparency regulations?

The baseline technical implementation of retargeting is always with audience data that is used to re-engage customers. It is imperative that all integrations streaming data into targetable non-PII format is seamlessly automated in order to comply to data privacy regulations. Users are now given the chance to opt-out on advertising, and OpenRTB specification ensures targeting only those that have provided consent. Modern-day marketers are increasingly aware of the importance of brand association and messaging in a brand safe environment. Programmatic activation of retargeting campaigns allows for increased granularity and transparency of delivery on to client-approved brand safe whitelists. This gives advertisers more power to control where, what, and whom they want to show their message to.

What are the main key takeaways for mobile marketing teams from your latest report?

The mobile app ecosystem has matured and requires a sophisticated, holistic approach to reaching new users and activating them to customers. Continuing the dialogue with users during the customer journey along the funnel requires a refined audience strategy and complex optimization. The report provides key requirement criteria that advertisers can use to assess the right retargeting partner to choose. The readers of this report will find in-depth steps on how to execute a successful retargeting strategy.

How do you help your customers benefit from your retargeting platform?

We believe that a user’s journey with an app does not simply end with an install, but provides an opportunity to engage and increase the customer value over time. AppLift’s Retargeting solutions allows for custom-tailored remarketing solutions to re-engage churned users and help turn existing users into customers. The AppLift retargeting platform offers a variety of capabilities such as Audience Segmentation, Product Feed integration, and Dynamic Creatives that can be customized to allow for a seamless execution of performance-driven retargeting campaigns.

How  do Retargeting platforms integrate with CDPs?

Retargeting platforms must have dedicated data endpoints for direct API integrations with CDPs. It is important to thoroughly understand the format, as well as the recency of data streaming in order to accurately receive the data and turn it into actionable data. We have experienced that it is also important to establish communication early on regarding the counting methodology and the original format of the customer data before it is streamed to the retargeting platform.

How do you see trends in mobile audience data influencing the adoption of mobile-only CDP technologies for marketing?

We live in a mobile-first world where people are using their mobile devices for various situations and for longer periods. The application verticals are becoming pillars of the daily utility function, entertainment, and lifestyle. The amount of content available in in-app environments has also increased to encourage deeper user experience. As mobile applications have become a part of our daily life, the amount of mobile audience data has not only grown in volume but also in which application events can be sent as postbacks to create targetable segments. I believe that this dynamic evolution of mobile is creating a need for mobile-specific CDP technologies that understand and keep pace with the fast growth of mobile.

 How do you work with AI/machine-learning technologies at AppLift?

AppLift employs Data Scientists, Business Intelligence Analysts, as well as sophisticated Machine Learning Engineers to continue to refine the automation of optimization algorithms.  In order to remain competitive in the field of AI-driven technologies, we constantly vet 3rd-party solutions against AppLift’s proprietary algorithms to ensure that our solutions are providing best-in-class results.

What are your predictions on the most disruptive forces in the Mobile Retargeting market in 2018-2020? How do you prepare for these disruptions?

Until now, the mobile ecosystem has been heavily siloed in acquiring new users with only user acquisition marketing plans. The merger of UA and Retargeting into a singular optimization engine will fuel the next evolution of customer activation and transform user acquisition into customer acquisition. This elegant, organic marriage of different parts of the funnel feeds each other with real-time data utilizing the best learnings from retargeting to empower UA. With GDPR, advertisers need to share data only with trusted partners rather than sampling multiple “specialist” players that can cater to both efforts at once.

How much has GDPR impacted your operations?   

There seems to have been a wave of panic in the industry that swept across many stakeholders this year. Embracing GDPR and addressing it with deep consideration throughout all aspects of our organization has been a major priority of ours. This includes a thorough internal education and certification as well as providing insights and education to our clients. Ensuring GDPR compliance has added a layer of security validation that only provides more transparency and consent to receiving relevant advertising in our industry.

Thanks for chatting with us, Dorian.

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