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Online Ad Targeting: Who's Most Likely to Act?

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Business professionals working in the legal, retail, and software industries are most likely to take action—such as download a whitepaper, start a free trial, or make a purchase—after clicking on an ad, according to a study by Bizo. Those working in certain job functions, such as operations, legal, and sales, are also more likely to act on display ads.

Ranked by Bizo's Action Rate Index* (ARI), which measures the rate at which users perform a desired action after receiving a display ad impression, and using data from campaigns run over a 12-month period in the Bizo network, professionals in the following 10 business segments are most likely to take action on display ads:

  1. Legal: 223%
  2. Retail: 192%
  3. Software: 185%
  4. Media publishing: 184%
  5. Wholesale: 157%
  6. Telecom: 121%
  7. Hospitality: 116%
  8. Real estate: 108%
  9. Business services: 108%
  10. Consumer services: 107%

Similarly, ranked by ARI scores, professionals in the following 10 job functions are most likely to act on display ads:

  1. Legal: 257%
  2. Operations: 218%
  3. Consulting: 157%
  4. Sales: 156%
  5. Marketing: 147%
  6. Finance: 146%
  7. Government: 102%
  8. Education: 102%
  9. Scientific: 100%
  10. Engineering and technical: 97%


"The typical business sales process is long, complex, and involves multiple decision makers, requiring sellers to build trusting relationships with their buyers. This means companies that market to business professionals need to reach, educate, and motivate the right audiences to close the sale," said Chris Mann, director of product management of Bizo.

"The data released today highlights the power of data-driven online advertising, giving marketers insight into who is taking action in response to an ad, and enabling them to precisely target decision makers with ads that will impact the purchasing decision."

*The Action Rate Index is determined by the rate at which users performed a desired action after receiving a display ad impression. The percentage is calculated by comparing the number of online ads shown to a segment of business professionals to the number of times that same set of business professionals took an action against online advertisements. An index was then created, normalizing the data. 


About the data: Findings are based on data from campaigns run over a 12-month period across the 85 million business professionals currently in the Bizo network.


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  • by Leslie Wed May 25, 2011 via web

    I was a little surprised that Legal was the top industry and professional. Not something I would have guessed.

  • by Justin Wed May 25, 2011 via web

    I'm just wondering if legal professionals are clicking on ads to see whether they are in fact in line with the law or perhaps with intellectual property rights, etc?

    Funny that marketing is number 5 on the list. Perhaps they are so inundated that they are just too jaded to click-through now as an individual target?

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