It’s official. Nielsen’s Designated Market Areas (DMAs) are becoming the paid search targeting standard for metro areas. Microsoft’s adCenter has announced it’s adopting DMAs as its method for targeting metropolitan areas, a little over a week after Google announced the same shift.
The change, in adCenter’s case, will take place in late September and October. During this period, Microsoft will automatically migrate all advertisers targeting metros to DMAs.
The company recommends that advertisers keep a close eye on traffic during this time period, so they can adjust campaigns accordingly. If, for example, the DMA change results in an increase in traffic, advertisers may want to adjust their budgets or, alternatively, change targeting to zero in on a smaller area. If traffic decreases, advertisers may want to target additional DMAs.
DMAs, created and maintained by Nielsen, are the default method of designating the boundaries of metropolitan areas for television, and, now, they’re becoming the gold standard for search advertising. Many display ad servers, such as Google’s DoubleClick, have long offered targeting by DMAs.
The change to targeting by DMAs is no surprise, as adCenter has made no secret of the fact that it wants advertisers to be able to easily import campaigns from AdWords.