Friday, April 15, 2011

Start-Up Watch COD: Buysight delivers retargeting KPIs at real scale

We’ve all done it: gone to a site looking for info, or even ready to buy, and then gotten distracted by something. Maybe we wanted to check just one more online store for pricing, or visit Consumer Reports. Maybe the baby started crying and you had to leave the screen to tend to its needs. Or maybe you just didn’t make it ‘over the fence’ – weren’t quite convinced enough to click the ole buy button.

So you left the site, and went about your business.

Now we all can see that a person who engages in such behavior is still a great prospect, and that marketing resources spent against him or her are likely to yield a high return. So a whole retargeting industry has risen up to help you capitalize on it.

The challenge of retargeting is that the number of people who visit your site and don’t buy isn’t huge, at least in terms of the total category user base. There’s only so much money you can spend on retargeting.

The question is, ‘Is there a way to get those retargeting rates of return, on a significantly broader scale?

A company called Buysight believes it has the answer. This New York- and Silicon Valley-based start-up has figured out an ingenious way to target more genuine category and brand intenders, delivering results that rival those for retargeting, but with much larger universes. And you buy it CPC, just like Search! I first learned about them when Catalyst S+F did a small project for them last Fall, and was impressed at how much there there was there. (They are no longer a client.)

CMO Jeff Weitzman puts it like this: “Audiences don't buy things, people do. Buyer Targeting is different from BT in that it looks at an individual's real-time SHOPPING behaviors, not broad audience interest segments. And it’s different than retargeting in that it’s not based solely on a visit to a single site. Buyer Targeting focuses on predictive modeling off a large set of shopping-specific behaviors that allow us to know the purchase intent of a given individual in real time and with high accuracy.”

There are four components to the Buysight model:

•Real-Time Shopper Marketplace: Buysight has created a data coop in which retailers and brands share information. This helps the site create real-time buyer profiles for millions of consumers. Now, you get first crack at your site visitors. But if you present them with a number of messages after they visit and they don’t respond, then your dollars move on, and other retailers and brands are given a crack at them. So the retailer doesn’t suffer by sharing users, but can benefit from being able to target other retailers’ “nonresponders." Nifty swifty, hunh? Yet again I could kick myself for not thinking of this first. Once again proving the adage, “Those who can’t…write blog posts about those who can.:
•Buyer Intent Map: Buysight analyzes the shopping interests of the majority of online consumers, and develops a “Buyer Intent Map” for each. This map enables the company to identify confirmed shoppers in the categories that interest them. These maps form the foundation of the service.
•Bid-Based CPC Ad Model: You pay for Buysight banners in the same way you would search words. You set the parameters of a campaign, identify a bid price, and you are off to the races. Analytics help you identify insights and optimize your program to drive greater performance and scale over time.
•Dynamic Creative: Because a more custom creative execution including the actual item the consumer desires is proven to be more effective at driving conversion, Buysight offers dynamic creative units that grab appropriate photos, descriptions, and pricing from site feeds. Thus they are optimized at the product level and can also show related products, special or limited time offers, and price comparisons.

The “gimme” prospects for Buysight are online retailers. Because retail’s the place where the financial benefits are the clearest and the fastest coming. But Buysight can also have relevance in brand campaigns where the client is seeking to increase its mindshare with category hand raisers.

Not possible handraisers.

Not people that may perhaps possibly be handraisers.

But actual people with their hands in the air.

And how cool is that?

It’s early days yet for these folks. They have their A round, and have signed a number of major online and brick and mortar retailer clients to use the service on an ongoing basis.

Thanks to ad:tech for publishing this first.

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