US colleges try "retargeting" ads to build brand

August 7, 2012

Retargeting is a form of online advertising where companies buy advertising through a pool of websites called an exchange. When an individual with a tagged browser visits other websites, any that are part of the exchange may display an ad from the initial site. Retargeting ads let PSE institutions subtly reach students in the virtual places where they already spend their time, says an enrolment official at Nebraska's Creighton University, which is experimenting with retargeting. In April, some 160,000 browsers were tagged on Creighton's website, and about 865,000 of its ads were then displayed on other sites. The Creighton official says she sees retargeting ads not as a means of generating leads, but as a way to raise brand awareness. The Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription required)