C-T offering new digital solutions

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Local businesses can extend their advertising reach across the World Wide Web through Kingsdale Media, an eastern North Carolina digital marketing agency bridging the gap between community newspapers and the websites and apps their readers use each day.

Kingsdale specializes in programmatic digital advertising, which is responsible for the local ads users notice on national websites, in smartphone apps and on music and video streaming services. U.S. businesses expect to spend $60 billion on programmatic advertising in 2019, according to trade publication eMarketer’s ad spending forecast.

“This is the marketing agency for the mom-and-pop shops and the medium-sized businesses and even the larger businesses who don’t have access to the platforms we have access to,” said Niki Morock, Kingsdale’s digital media director. “If we have an advertiser who is already advertising on radio or TV, they’re reaching that radio or TV audience, but maybe they’re not reaching across the entire internet or maybe they’re only reaching this market and want to expand.”

Kingsdale Media plans targeted advertising campaigns based on internet users’ proximity to a retail or service business as well as nationwide and worldwide campaigns based on users’ browsing histories.

“We can target people on their phones based on their GPS location. It’s non-identifiable, but if they’re on their phone and they’re in an app in which they can receive ads, we can target those people,” Morock explained.

Some businesses may be familiar with Google AdSense and AdWords, which populate local ads on partner websites. Google’s one of more than 30 exchanges through which Kingsdale can place advertising.

“We want to do the stuff that it’s too difficult or too expensive to try to learn yourself,” Morock said. “It’s taken me years to learn how to really target an audience and get the results that we’re looking for, so experience is really important. You can’t just jump into this. You might get lucky the first time, but you need to understand there’s some psychology involved — it’s about how people think.”

In addition to online display ads, Kingsdale can place audio ads on streaming services like Spotify and video ads on websites like YouTube. Those see high completion rates because the typically brief ad spots aren’t skippable. Morock said she’s often able to repurpose radio and television commercials for digital use.

“It’s just one more way to take the investment they already made and get more bang for their buck out of it,” she said.

As for users who feel like ads are following them around the internet, Morock notes that programmatic advertising is based on non-identifiable user data gleaned from cookies that track browser activity.

“You get placed into a bucket of people who are interested in, say, athletic wear, exercise, health and fitness, and then I have the ability to target people in that bucket,” she explained. “I can’t target you specifically. I don’t know your name, I don’t know where you live, I don’t know your IP address, but I can target the people in that bucket and most likely you will see that ad.”

Kingsdale aims for two to three times the average click-through rate for online display advertising, which is just under a tenth of a percent. Click-throughs improve as brand recognition increases, which requires repeated exposure to an advertiser’s content.

“Most of the time, all the big marketing gurus will tell you it takes eight to 12 impressions or touches, so it could be a print ad, it could be several digital display ads and then you see a video ad or hear an audio ad,” Morock said. “And after eight to 12 times it’s there, it’s reached you, and you may start thinking ‘Maybe I should check that out.’”

Kingsdale can work with businesses of any size and any budget.

“We sit down with each client and create a media plan,” Morock said. “We not only want to understand where you are in your business, we also want to understand what your budget is and how long you want to run the campaign.”

Media plans often also include print advertising in local newspapers and display advertising on newspaper websites. Kingsdale was formed at The Wake Weekly in Wake Forest and became part of The Wilson Times Co. when the media company purchased the Wake Forest newspaper in January.

Through Restoration Newsmedia, a joint venture of North Carolina’s two remaining family-owned daily newspapers, Kingsdale Media is partnered with The Daily Record in Dunn, The Courier-Times in Roxboro, The Mount Olive Tribune, The Wilson Times, The Enterprise in Spring Hope, the Johnstonian News in Kenly, The Wake Weekly and the Butner-Creedmoor News.

“A lot of people don’t associate newspapers with the digital world, but we’re here and we want to help everybody cross that divide,” Morock said. “You can do both. You don’t have to do one or the other.”

For more information, visit www.kingsdalemedia.com or email Niki Morock at niki@kingsdalemedia.com.

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