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How NextRoll’s Unified Identity Helps Growing Businesses Reach Customers

NextRoll's Tech Stack Series #2


One of the most significant challenges for growing businesses is reaching customers. The world of online advertising is a noisy one, with millions of companies all targeting users on their computers, phones, and TVs. To break through that noise and stand out meaningfully, businesses need tools to target the right user at the right time with the right message. Since Day One, NextRoll has helped businesses of all sizes leverage our industry-leading technology to accurately build user profiles and identify them across the web, regardless of device, to deliver relevant ads that lead to increased sales conversions.  

We do this at NextRoll by using the power of tracking pixels and a cross-device graph to help our tens of thousands of AdRoll and RollWorks customers worldwide reach their target audience effectively and efficiently. To do this, we provide customers with these website pixels that feed data back to our platforms. When a user visits, the pixel runs a bit of code, records their interactions on the site, and creates an anonymous profile. Did they examine a product or service, add something to a shopping cart, or make a purchase? When they leave, this technology also helps us send them our customer's tailor-made ads for the products or services they are interested in as they visit other websites. 

One way our technology uniquely goes above and beyond to assist businesses of all sizes is through our Pixel Assistant. Introduced in 2022, our Pixel Assistant ensures pixels are working correctly for our customers at all times. It also scours all pages of a customer's website and sees which pages or URLs do and don’t have the tracking pixel. If a page tied to an ad campaign is missing a pixel, it will prioritize that in a report so the customer can address the issues immediately. The Pixel Assistant can also show our customers the existing audience segmentation associated with a page and make adjustments or create new or additional segments if needed. Pages can also be categorized, which our algorithm uses to optimize real-time bidding performance. Finally, with the Pixel Assistant, customers can opt-in to have it set up forms to collect data like emails to help target customers without any further developer work. 

The Need for a Unified Identity

The digital advertising system worked very well for many years until there became multiple ways for people to surf the web. Today people can visit web pages from a laptop, tablet, smartphone, or even a video game console, and they might visit vastly different types of pages on various devices, which could skew the data and profile of the user. There became a need to create a unified identity for a user crossing over from one device to another. 

Some online advertisers cannot create a unified identity and will guess who the user is based on an IP address, resulting in them getting the wrong type of ad. For example, in a household that shares a computer, a father could mistakenly get ads for his daughter’s favorite shoe brand while she gets ones for his favorite hair products. Sending the right message to the right person is essential, especially for things like retargeting or emails. When a brand sends a communication to the wrong intended user, it could actually harm its reputation. 

To avoid this, our NextRoll technology leverages more than tracking pixels to build profiles that identify and match a user. We leverage billions of points of proprietary data, plus the ability to onboarded customers' offline data like email lists and information from CRM software like Salesforce or e-commerce platforms like Shopify, in a privacy-first way. This builds a unified identity that ensures the user sees the relevant ad, receives an appropriate email, or sends their information to another marketing system for future engagement. It allows our AdRoll and RollWorks customers to reach their target audience across devices, from smartphones to tablets and laptops. Its effectiveness is why many of our customers spend a significant amount of their budget accessing this cross-device traffic.

Help Clients Bid on the Best Ad Space

As mentioned, our unique tracking pixel is placed on AdRoll and RollWorks clients' websites and collects anonymous user data to construct a profile. When visitors move on, the code looks for opportunities to place ads on new sites and devices, which are designed to entice them to interact with them. Our system will also note if they return to our customer’s site and if that results in conversion/sale. Because our technology has been trained on collecting and analyzing data for small-to-medium businesses for over 15 years, not to mention our team built it to serve our target customer base, it’s uniquely positioned to beat out competitors in the space.

Here is a simplified hypothetical example of how it all works. User 123 visits our customer, Joe's Sunglass Shack's web page, then decides to check out a site like BuzzFeed. The AdRoll and RollWorks bidding system will evaluate User 123's behavior and the potential for a favorable action (e.g., conversion). If it is likely, it will move to place an ad and enter into an auction to buy placement on the BuzzFeed site. If it successfully wins the bidding, it will display the appropriate messaging to catch User 123's eye and tempt them to return to Joe's Sunglass Shack and buy a new pair of eyewear. The pixel will continue to track whether User 123 returns to the customer's site, regardless of which device they are on, and if there is an eventual conversion, sale, or other action. 

The pixel can also help the customer measure the value of the favorable action or sale and provide attribution to where the performance came from. Let's say Joe's Sunglass Shack's ad campaign sees a pool of 1,000 users eventually view 4-5 different ads each, with a total spend of $100. Ultimately, 30 users purchase a pair of sunglasses for $35, which gives a total sales volume of $1,050. The pixel can track the user's journey from the first ad to the conversion and let the Sunglass Shack know that for every dollar spent, they got a Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) of $10.5 in revenue. 

Our proprietary data at NextRoll powers the AdRoll and RollWorks platforms, and it’s designed to help small and mid-sized businesses reach their target audience and get the best bang for their advertising buck. It supports our mission of democratizing digital marketing and supporting growing companies that may not have the bandwidth or budget to launch multi-channel ad campaigns. These are economical and efficient solutions that can help businesses improve sales and the bottom line. 

AdRoll and RollWorks are both powerful platforms that serve companies in two separate, high-growth markets. Head to the AdRoll and RollWorks websites to learn more about how our NextRoll core technology reaches and supports customers in those unique ecosystems.