Dynamic ads change based on the individual viewing them - perfect for brands looking to level up their paid media marketing by incorporating personalisation into their campaigns. Dynamic ads use data from the viewer’s search history, location, preferences and purchase history to serve personalised messages.
For example, if someone has searched ‘Ski Holidays’ your dynamic ad might show them a personalised ad highlighting the best deals your brand has on flights to Oslo or Geneva.
Dynamic ads are a powerful tool for brands because they allow you to create messages that resonate with each consumer type based on their individual needs. Plus, by personalising the copy of your ads, you can significantly increase engagement and conversions - just look at this research that shows brands who personalise increase revenue by 40%!
To ensure your dynamic ads are effective, it’s important to understand the behavioural principles that can impact user decisions. I’ll explore these below.
This is the art of using language to influence the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours of your audience. By understanding how language affects the brain, you can craft messages that are more persuasive and engaging.
One key principle of psycholinguistic copywriting is using language that is easy to understand.
Studies have shown that people are more likely to be persuaded by messages that are easy to process. High frequency words (words that appear most often in articles, magazines etc) have been shown to be heard, read and repeated faster, and to have had better recall (Paivio, 1971; Postman, 1970). In other words, don’t try too hard to use longer, lesser-known words, or you’ll risk people not reading them or not remembering what they’ve read. Use simple language, short sentences, and avoid jargon.
Another principle is using language that evokes emotion. People are more likely to engage with messages that make them feel something. This could be excitement, fear, or even humour. For example, studies have shown that online adverts that use emotive language and evoke emotions (positive or negative) through their imagery or videos are far more likely to be shared through social media than those which provide only information. Interestingly, the same set of studies found that prominent placement of branding on the ads is linked with less engagement (Tellis et al., 2019).
Audience segmentation is the process of dividing your audience into smaller groups based on shared characteristics. By segmenting your audience, you can create messages that are more relevant to each group. This can lead to higher engagement and conversions. Whilst this is a key step in creating dynamic ads, this isn’t where you should end your targeting efforts.
To really elevate your targeting, we recommend going further than audience segmentation alone and carrying out a behavioural analysis of your target audiences to deeply understand their needs, wants, motivations and concerns. For example, a group of friends who are experienced skiers will have different needs and queries than a family interested in a ski holiday. Advertising the beginner slopes and lessons available will appeal more to the family than the pro skiers. And information about transporting personal ski gear may be more relevant to the group of experienced skiers for example.
With good segmentation and a sufficient understanding of your audience, you can get to personalising the language in your ads. Personalisation is a key component of dynamic ads and is a very powerful behavioural technique. By using language that speaks directly to the ad recipient and their needs, you can create a message that is more engaging and persuasive.
For example, instead of using generic language like “Book your family ski holiday now” you could use personalised language targeted at particular audiences. For example, if my audience research led me to understand that families are concerned about having to supervise their young children in ski lessons, I might want to use reassuring and informative language, such as “Ski season is here! Book your child into our fully supervised beginner’s slopes course today”
You can further elevate the personalisation of the language in ad copies by understanding which cognitive biases are most likely to grab the attention of your specific audience. The scarcity principle or FOMO as an example might work best with a younger audience or a type of audience who like to keep up with the latest trends. Whereas loss aversion framing (highlighting what they’d miss out on by not taking up the opportunity) may work better for audiences who have less expendable resources (be it time or money).
One of the most powerful behavioural principles is social proof. This is the idea that people are more likely to do something if they see others doing it. In travel ads, this could mean using language like “Join the thousands of satisfied customers who have booked their dream vacation with us.” Add in the personalisation and strategically targeting audiences, and you’re onto a winner!
Social proof messaging works because it communicates to us (on a subconscious level) that this is the right thing to do because others are doing it too. This means it's a great technique to employ at the post-purchase stage as well to keep customers away from any post-purchase regret. For example, once someone has booked a holiday, they could be remarketed with ads that share inspiration for holiday activities with wording such as “see the top 5 activities other families recommend on their skiing holidays”.
Dynamic ads are incredible at levelling up your marketing game as they are personalised to your audience by their very nature. But that doesn’t mean that all the hard work is done for you. To really level up and really give your audience what they want and need you should consider important lessons from behavioural science to include in your dynamic ad copy.
Firstly, understand how the human brain processes information and what sticks out. Use catchy language, and keep it short, simple and free of jargon.
Make the time to research and understand your audience, beyond basic segmentation. Only then will you be able to target effectively and know how to personalise your ad language to the audience.
Finally, consider how social proof messaging can tip people over from consideration to purchase. Whether that’s in your ad copy wording or using dynamic ads to highlight reviews and recommendations from satisfied customers.
A behavioural science expert, Kiran ensures that behavioural science is woven throughout everything we do by upskilling colleagues and embedding behavioural science into client strategies. Kiran is passionate about creating a fair and positive working culture through understanding and addressing diversity and inclusion matters.