Google Behavioral Targeting Watch: Certifies Online Ad Targeter for its content network that “delivers unparalleled consumer insights”

Google’s growing number of “certified” third-party ad companies–many whom engage in behavioral targeting–which now operate over its “content Network” should raise questions from policymakers and privacy advocates around the world. Take Tumri, for example, which won such Google approval last month. Tumri is the “new player in the behavioral targeting space that promises seamless integration of highly targeted content with heightened consumer relevancy,” according to trade publication Clickz. Tumri says it combines “behavioral, contextual, geographic, demographic, and more” so advertisers can, for example, ensure that “the target audience take action rather than simply generating awareness…”

When it announced it had gained the Google seal of targeting approval last month, Tumri explained that [our emphasis]:

“We are excited to be included as one of the platforms certified on the Google content network,” said Calvin Lui, President & CEO of Tumri…Tumri’s participation in the Google content network combines the impact and effectiveness of today’s most dynamic and targeted ad delivery platform with Google’s broad reach. The combination of Tumri’s patent pending targeting and optimization platform with Google’s leading content network will deliver unmatched relevancy to consumers and performance for advertisers. As part of the certification, Tumri worked with Google to ensure that all Tumri ads meet Google’s policies, specifications, and performance requirements.

Attack of the AdPod People:

Tumri describes its service this way: “Dynamic and interactive by design, the Tumri AdPod enables publishers to deliver the right message to the right customer at the right time, yielding greater consumer relevancy, stronger click through and conversion metrics, strengthened monetization and heightened user satisfaction.” They explain that:
“Across traditional web sites, social networks, and the incredible amount of user-generated content that users interact with daily, consumers’ unique needs and personalities are reflected in the content of the pages they visit, the context of their visits, and the aggregated behavior pattern they demonstrate online. Given the power of the Internet, marketers and content developers can reach consumers using measurable dialogs across all online channels – web sites, advertisements, email, widgets, instant messaging, and many more….”

They also discuss the company’s tools, including its “matching engine,” which enables it to “match in real-time users with commercial content…
We utilize information from site visits, geographical location, browser context, search behavior, ISP/bandwidth characteristics, time of day, and past interactions which then become input to our classifiers who work in collaboration to determine:

  • Who is this user?
  • What is this user about?
  • What are they doing right now?
  • What are they in the market for?
  • What are they most likely to respond to NOW?”

Author: jeff

Jeff Chester is executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy. A former journalist and filmmaker, Jeff's book on U.S. electronic media politics, entitled "Digital Destiny: New Media and the Future of Democracy" was published by The New Press in January 2007. He is now working on a new book about interactive advertising and the public interest.

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