Beyond Google & Facebook: 3 Ways Advertisers Can Engage New Audiences


Jeff Kupietzky, Chief Executive Officer, PowerInbox 

For years, advertisers have been running to the fire with a fire hose of spending as new online channels emerge, become the hot new property, and then fade, only to be replaced by the next big thing. We’ve seen this scenario play out across web, social, interactive sites like Twitch, streaming media platforms, and user-generated content platforms like YouTube.

The barrage of content has not only been costly, but it’s also become an annoyance to consumers, who have turned to ad blockers and paid subscriptions to avoid the onslaught. Now, as Facebook and Google continue to shift the way ads are delivered, and virtually all web browsers move to block third-party cookies, advertisers are struggling more than ever to find new ways to target and engage online audiences.

Throughout all of these shifts, one thing has remained consistent: the value of direct, one-to-one audience communication to provide consistent, reliable audience engagement. Publications that offer personalized, relevant content to their subscribers are a goldmine for advertisers. Not only do these outlets know their audience’s preferences, interests and needs because of their known interactions with their content, but they also offer something no other channel can: trust. Subscribers trust the publishers they subscribe to and this trust is proven to convey to the advertisers featured within them.

To rise above the noise and end dependence on cookies and walled gardens like Google and Facebook, here are three ways advertisers can engage this captive, trusting and precisely targetable audience:

  • Email newsletter advertising. Email has proven to be the most trusted channel for online audiences. This is especially true during the pandemic, as subscribers have turned to email to get reliable, trustworthy information about what is happening in their local communities.

Advertising within those emails puts your brand message directly in front of these captive audiences. And, it’s arguably the most precise targeting methodology available today. Publishers can track audience interests based on their known identity through their email address, so they know exactly what they want. This ability to target a specific individual with content you know they are interested in is unique—cookies, search and social targeting all make assumptions about user profiles and can’t easily track users across multiple devices, if at all. Email can.

And, even better, data shows that the Gmail and Mail apps are the most frequently used on every mobile device. Neither of those apps enable advertising within the app, but you can advertise in individual emails, thereby effectively putting your brand message inside the apps users most frequently use.

  • Push notification monetization. Similar to email, push notifications are becoming an increasingly valuable one-to-one communication channel between publishers and their subscribers. Leveraging the same trust dynamic, over 70% of users sign up to receive push notifications from publishers they depend on, creating an extremely valuable engagement opportunity for brands. And the best part is, users don’t even have to be on the publishers’ site to receive the push, which means subscribers are engageable wherever they browse.

Push offers the same precise targetability and relevancy as email, making this a valuable channel for brand advertisers. Push subscribers are highly engaged and want to receive those messages, making it a prime channel for brands to target known subscribers with precise, relevant content.

  • Join a multichannel ad network. Working with individual publishers to make buys into their email newsletters and push notifications can be a daunting task. One way to overcome the massive time and effort required is to partner with a multichannel ad network that automates these buys and placements.

Similar to a real-time bidding service, a multichannel ad network handles the process for you. You simply upload creative, set the parameters for audience targeting and budgeting, and the platform does the work, placing your ads in emails and push notifications as appropriate, optimizing and adjusting to deliver the right content to the right person over the right channel at the right time.

This allows advertisers to reach more publishers and more audiences, particularly those with a niche market that you may not otherwise be able to reach. By working with an established platform, you get better placements, higher quality traffic and more reliable deliverability with less hassle than working with hundreds of individual publishers directly.

With the constant shifting in the digital landscape, advertisers need proven methods for reaching captive, opt-in audiences. By investing in one-to-one channels with trusted publishers, like email and push notifications, advertisers can overcome many of the inherent pitfalls in other digital channels to drive higher engagement with more valuable audiences.

About the Author: Jeff serves as CEO of PowerInbox, an innovative technology company helping companies monetize their email newsletters through dynamic content.  Before joining PowerInbox, Jeff served as President and CEO at, managing worldwide operations and building Oversee’s owned and operated portfolio of domain names into one of the world’s largest, establishing the company as the leader in Internet real estate. Under his leadership, the company diversified into lead generation, building several high growth and high margin businesses. Before that, Kupietzky served in leadership positions with X1 Technologies, Digital Insight (Intuit), Siebel Systems (Oracle), and Loudcloud/Opsware (Hewlett-Packard). Jeff began his career as a consultant for McKinsey & Co., developing business strategies for software, insurance and banking clients. A frequent speaker at Digital Media conferences, he has also been featured on CNN, CNBC, and in many news and business magazines. Jeff earned an MBA with high distinction from Harvard Business School and graduated Summa Cum Laude with B.A. in Economics from Columbia University. 

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