The Death Of Keywords As Audiences Become Key To Targeting In Search

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The keyword won’t last much longer, said Pooja Lal, media-buying manager at Cisco, during the MediaPost Search Insider Summit in Park City, Utah, on Thursday.

“We’ve already started changing gears,” she said. “We’re really looking at audiences and creating them based on programmatic…. Search is following in the same format.”

Marketers talked a lot about building and using audiences compared with keywords at the  Search Insider Summit on Thursday.

Companies like Yelp, as well as traditional search platform companies such as Google and Bing have slowly begun to rely more heavily on building audiences rather than keywords to target consumers. The trend began several years ago, but marketers have just begun to acknowledge that they compensate for the change.

Jon Kagan, senior director of search and biddable media at Cogniscient Media, believes the use of keywords for paid search will vanish in about four to five years. He and his team are so “hyper focused on audience and demographic data -- first, second and third -- and the recipient of the ad that no one really cares about the keyword.
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