Top 5 contextual targeting tactics: seasonal alignment

January 3, 2024 | 3 minute read
Tim Carr
Head of Marketing, Oracle Advertising
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Top 5 contextual targeting tactics: seasonal alignment

Whether naturally occurring or manufactured through marketing activities, many brands experience predictable, repeatable, significant surges in sales year over year during the same time frames. By monitoring these buying patterns and identifying their drivers, advertisers can place their ads in the types of content most closely related to those activities or events using contextual intelligence.

For example, the lip balm category experiences a massive surge in sales every year on the week of December 18th. Consumers do not all suddenly get chapped lips; rather, sales spike because brands like ChapStick are classic last-minute stocking purchases for the holiday. To handle chapped lips usage occasions, ChapStick could use functionally aligned contextual targeting to place ads around skincare content or articles on protecting your lips from sun, cold, and wind damage. But to tap into the seasonal surge for gifting occasions, lip balm brands can target content focused on top holiday gifts, sales events, or broader holiday-related content.  

Much like the surge in sales that can come and go quickly, we often see similar patterns in new content creation and consumer content engagement. Advertisers must be mindful of these trends when planning flighting and monitoring impression delivery. By working closely with your contextual targeting provider, like Oracle Advertising, you can tap into insights to help you plan efficiently and identify when you may need to add or create segments to deliver the relevancy you need.

Sporting events  One of the most frequently used forms of seasonal contextual targeting is advertising in content surrounding major national, regional, or even global sporting events. Oracle Predicts segments, whose terms dynamically update daily, are ideal for capturing the latest breaking news and drama related to teams, players, injuries, scores, entertainment, locales, and more.  

  • Super Bowl
  • March Madness
  • Olympics
  • Euro Championship

Holidays – Holidays are the most predictable of seasonal happenings and can be significant to a host of advertisers spanning across industries from retail to hospitality, consumer goods to travel, and everything in between. By nature, they are also short-lived, making it critical for marketers to reach their desired audiences close to the point of purchase. The right curated holiday contextual segment can do just that, or alternatively you can create a customized holiday segment specific to your brands use case within the Oracle Advertising Contextual Intelligence UI.

  • Valentine's Day
  • Mother's Day/ Father's Day
  • Halloween
  • Thanksgiving

Shopping seasonal events – For retailers and brands sold through retail channels, capturing new consumers and winning share during key shopping-related seasonal events can make or break a year. Contextual targeting can place your brand's ads front and center while your target customers are in the active shopping mindset - researching, reading, and engaging in content related to those specific seasonal events. 

  • Music Festivals
  • Back-to-School
  • Black Friday
  • Graduation

Weather and cyclical seasonality  From allergy brands to sunscreen and mosquito repellant to swimsuits, sales for many products are highly dependent on weather-related patterns that change throughout the year. Often, consumers engaging in one type of content related to these seasons may also be interested in other products or services. For example, when researching travel arrangements for a spring break trip to Hawaii, seeing an adjacent ad for a bathing suit can spur an unplanned purchase. 

  • Spring Break
  • Summer Fun
  • Winter Sports
  • Cold and Flu Season

For more help crafting context targeting plan, please contact your Oracle Advertising account management team, or you can request a consultation to learn more. 

For more blogs in this series, please see the below:


Tim Carr

Head of Marketing, Oracle Advertising

Tim Carr leads marketing for Oracle Advertising’s suite of digital media solutions, including audience targeting, contextual intelligence, data onboarding, ad verification, and attention measurement solutions.  Before joining Oracle, Tim spent 20 years working in the CPG industry, holding various roles in sales, insights, and strategy at Pfizer Consumer Healthcare and in shopper analytics and loyalty marketing at IRI and Catalina.

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