Dark marketing

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Dark marketing is the phenomenon that characterizes professional marketers’ lack of transparency in the ever-evolving digital marketing ecosystem, resulting from technological advancements that contribute to:

  • Fragmentation of platforms
  • Segmentation of consumers
  • Personalization of content

The digital age (also known as the Information Age) and “MarTech” revolution expose marketers to an eclectic and fragmented collection of digital media platforms on which they can covertly target segmented audiences with personalized marketing content.[1] As a result, marketers are left in the “dark” with a narrow perspective on both their own landscapes and the digital marketing strategies of their competitors. From technological advancements, they are unable to grasp a comprehensive understanding of how competitors frame their marketing campaigns, on what platforms they advertise, when they advertise, and to whom. The term "dark marketing" can have other meanings, such as the approach used by brands to influence consumers without necessarily directly exposing them to the brand through their engagements. In this case, the targeted audience typically dislikes and dismisses the more traditional types of unconcealed marketing communication, making dark marketing an appealing strategy for brands.[2] When consumers are not directly exposed to the brands in marketing advertisements, the media is often unregulated and illegal products and services are marketed over the web below the radar.[3][verification needed]

Components[edit]

Dark marketing creates threats and inhibits opportunities for marketers to effectively reach their marketing objectives. Thus, having an action plan to combat Dark marketing gives marketers an edge over their competitors. Such a plan requires marketers to remain proactive and vigilant when planning for and launching their digital campaigns.

Fragmentation[edit]

They have the capacity to launch campaigns across social media and other digital platforms, including but not limited to, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram, Spotify, and Pandora. This broadens marketers’ reach and messaging scheme but complicates their abilities to track all competing campaigns. With opportunities to post texts, images, videos, commercials, carousel ads, and other broadcasts across a variety of digital platforms, fragmentation augments the opportunity for dark marketing.[citation needed]

Segmentation[edit]

Dark marketing is indicative of Market Segmentation, the process of clustering potential and existing consumers into sub-groups based on identifiable characteristics. Segmentation–such as differentiating by gender, age, and geographic location–is not a new concept, but digital breakthroughs of the twenty-first century have shaped its novel role in the digital marketing economy.Deliberate targeting of consumers maximizes efficiency and is conducive to higher rates of success reflected among key performance indicators (KPIs). A campaign’s target audience comprises relevant consumers who are likely to engage in the media, while consumers in the general public who do not have a stake remain outside of the segmented group. Marketers may wish to capture only prospective customers, in which they often use Market Segmentation to exclude current users. All excluded persons are left in the “dark”, experiencing dark marketing firsthand.[citation needed]

Personalization[edit]

Personalized marketing further filters segmented groups to the personal level. Companies smartly target individuals, within a segmented group, using variations of the same advertisement based on specific user interests. This technique is often applied through A/B Testing (also known as bucket tests or split-run testing) to determine which variables are most effective when targeting individual users. Personalized marketing provides the means for retargeting, when companies conduct advanced data analysis using HTTP cookies (also known as web cookies, Internet cookies, browser cookies, or cookies) to extract information about a specific user’s previous browsing activity, shopping carts, and other functions on the web. As a result, marketers are able to expose and re-expose unique advertisements that are tailored to their target audience members. Dark Marketing can be understood as the umbrella term under which "Dark Social" falls, which is a term to describe how dark social sharing on the web, among other things, is invisible to the public.[4]

Origins[edit]

In February 2012, Facebook first enabled advertisers to create “unpublished posts” (also known as “dark posts”) in a page post format with ads only shown on the right-hand side of the site.[5][6] Facebook pages could then create unpublished posts through the API, self-serve ad tool, or Power Editor in July 2012. Beginning in March 2013, advertisers could promote feed-based ads, meaning they could place unpublished posts on users’ News Feeds instead of being limited to the right-hand sidebar of Facebook.[7] A great example of the growing trend of dark marketing is Apple's Facebook page. The public page is completely blank, while the posts and advertisements are targeted to specific audiences in the dark.[8] Unlike the concept of dark posts, which was both conceived by and confined to Facebook, dark marketing transcends a single digital platform to illustrate the broader phenomenon of strategically targeting only specific consumers.


References[edit]


This article "Dark marketing" is from Wikipedia. The list of its authors can be seen in its historical. Articles copied from Draft Namespace on Wikipedia could be seen on the Draft Namespace of Wikipedia and not main one.

  1. Garg, Ashu. "MarTech and the Decade of the CMO: The 6th Key" (PDF). Foundation Capital. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  2. Weiss, Mathew (May 4, 2015). "In the dark about dark marketing?". Brand Union.
  3. Schurink, W.J.; Levinthal, T. (1983). "Business women exchanging sex for money: A descriptive study". South African Journal of Sociology. 14 (4): 154-163.
  4. Madrigal, Alexis (October 12, 2012). "Dark Social: We Have the Whole History of the Web Wrong". The Atlantic.
  5. "Unpublished Page Post". Facebook Business. Facebook. 2017. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  6. Darwell, Brittany (March 27, 2013). "Facebook advertisers can now reach users in News Feed with 'unpublished posts'". Adweek. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  7. Darwell, Brittany (May 21, 2013). "Facebook gives admins new way to create 'unpublished posts' directly from page". Adweek. Retrieved 13 September 2017.
  8. Kleinstein, Arik (August 5, 2017). "The Era of Dark Marketing: Why is Apple's Facebook Page Empty of Advertisements?". Calcalist.