Yup…you guessed it. Audience segments are going the way of the dinosaurs.
This may not come as much of a revelation to search marketers, who wouldn’t dream of running a search campaign where they couldn’t see the performance of each individual search term and vary bids on each search term as needed. Search marketers know that the ability to optimize their search campaigns at the keyword level is an integral part of making search campaigns successful.
In online display advertising, audience segments are a relic that pre-dates the real time bidding(RTB) era. Prior to real time bidding, advertisers had to buy blocks of ad impressions at fixed prices. The processes of the day, which included insertion orders being sent by fax, dictated that all targeted users be lumped into audience segments and purchased at a single price.
This practice was carried forth into the RTB era, but really shouldn’t have been. Real time bidding enables advertisers to bid different prices for each impression, based on the attributes of that individual impression and the data associated with the user that will view that impression.