Line item targeting best practices for data-driven creatives

How line item targeting works with dynamic rules

Line item targeting determines what time, which web pages, and what people are eligible for impressions. Dynamic rules determine which creative message to show on impression. If your data-driven creative has dynamic rules that conflict with the line item’s targeting, those rules will never be matched.

Data-driven creatives use dynamic rules, attempting to match each rule in your dynamic feed in priority order. If no rules are matched, the "Everyone else" variant is served. This variant is a generic fallback creative with a general message that could apply to any audience. This variant is also guaranteed to be eligible when a data-driven creative is delivered to non-personalized ad inventory.

Example 1: A single data-driven creative for a campaign

Content rules determine the specific creative variant to show on impression Line items determine media spend (where, when, who sees your impression)

Data-driven creative

Campaign: New York City

Dynamic Rules Insertion Orders and Line Items
Priority group 1: Audiences
  • First-party Audience A * 
    variant 1 assigned
     
  • First-party Audience B *
    variant 2 assigned
Insertion Order 1: Retargeting
  • Line item 1: Fashionistas
    Targeting: First-party Audience A *
    Sees variant 1
  • Line item 2: Fast Followers
    Targeting: First-party Audience B *
    Sees variant 2
   
Priority group 2: Prospecting
  • New York, NY (City)
    variant 3 assigned
Insertion Order 2: Prospecting
  • Line item 3: NYC Prospecting
    Targeting: Exclude First-party Audience A * and First-party Audience B *
    Sees variant 3
   
Priority group 3: Everyone else
  • Everyone Else
    variant 4 assigned
Insertion Order 3: Brand Awareness
  • Line item 4: Awareness
    Targeting: None 
    Sees variant 4

* In the example 1, First-party Audience A and First-party Audience B are retargeting audiences.

 

Example 2: Line item targeting always wins

In Example 2, the campaign manager set up 2 line items and assigned a data-driven creative with 4 variants. Because Line item 2 is targeted only to the Borough of Manhattan, it will not serve to any other locations in NYC. Priority Group 3 of the data-driven creative will not be shown to any consumers.

Content rules determine the specific creative variant to show on impression Line items determine media spend (where, when, who sees your impression)

Data-driven creative

Campaign: New York City

Dynamic Rules Insertion Orders and Line Items
Priority group 1: Retargeting
  • First-party Audience A *
    variant 1 assigned
     
  • First-party Audience B *
    variant 2 assigned
Insertion Order 1: Mid and Lower Funnel
  • Line item 1: Retargeting
    Targeting: First-party Audience A * and First-party Audience B *
    Sees variant 1 or variant 2
   
Priority group 2: Prospecting
New York, NY (City)
variant 3 assigned
  • Line item 2: Prospecting (also in Insertion Order 1)
    Targeting: Manhattan, New York (Borough)
    Exclude First-party Audience A * and First-party Audience B *
    Sees variant 3
   
Priority group 3: Everyone else
  • Everyone Else
    variant 4 assigned
No one will see variant 4

Guaranteed deals

You can assign data-driven creatives to Tag Guaranteed deals. Since Tag Guaranteed deals have no targeting, the dynamic rules will completely determine which message is sent to your audience.

Advanced setups

Display & Video 360 does not limit the combination of line item targeting and dynamic rules you can try. While this allows for sophisticated ways to reach the right person, at the right moment, with the right message, we recommend that you plan your setup carefully to make sure the combination you're using actually results in the outcome you are looking for.

Best practices: Check mark icon  Tips to avoid serving the "Everyone else" variant


#1: Your line item's targeting should always be narrower than your creative's dynamic rules

If you have separate line items to target metropolitan areas, including, for example, London, Paris, Tokyo, New York, Los Angeles, your data-driven creative's dynamic rules should include all of the same cities or more. You can then re-use the same dynamic creative for a different line item that targets additional cities covered by your creative's dynamic rules.

#2: When you assign your creative to a line item, make sure there are no conflicts

Conflicts can occur when your line item targets one customer segment, while the creative's dynamic rules are meant for a completely different segment. For example, if a line item targets New York, London, and Tokyo, and the data-driven creative has dynamic rules for New York, Paris, and Hong Kong, the "Everyone else" variant will serve for anyone outside New York.

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