Once upon a time, it was the only ad-targeting game in town. But context in advertising was overtaken for a time by data, demographics and ethnographics.

Now, with the deprecation of cookies looming, contextual AI is coming back to the fore, helping advertisers understand not just who their audience is but also the environment and mindset in which they are receiving ads.

In this video interview with Beet.TV, Lisa Giacosa, Chief Investment Officer at Spark Foundry, welcomes context’s come-back.

Considering the Holistic Human Being

When using video to target an individual with a specific product, advertisers need to consider which screen they’re on, Giacosa tells Beet.TV editorial director Lisa Granatstein.

“If they’re in their living room, you need to understand who they’re watching with and whether that is the right environment and context,” she says. Other factors to consider include the location, device, mindset and whether the viewer is in or outside the home.

For example, a local plumber’s ad will be much more relevant when the viewer is at home versus in a hotel room out of town. Meanwhile, personal medical messages may be okay on a small, private device but not in a public environment.

Bringing Relevance and Value to Advertising

Spark Foundry is a global media agency that forms part of Publicis Media. The firm specializes in media planning, buying, analytics, and multi-platform media strategies.

Looking ahead, Giacosa is excited by the potential of generative AI and contextual AI to bring art and science back together in advertising.

“What excites me is seeing how we can bring back more relevance and more value to the types of advertising that we deliver,” she says. “I think that gives us an opportunity to operate in a much faster way when we go to market.”

While AI is not new in media, having been used for decades in areas like machine learning, Giacosa expects it to be a big topic of conversation at this year’s Cannes Lions festival.

“I do think it will be a big topic that will be on the tips of people’s tongues,” she says. “This year is the year where people are really intrigued about what comes next.”

You’re watching “The Power of Context: Driving Attention to Intention in a Privacy-First Era,” a Beet.TV Leadership Series, presented by Seedtag. For more videos from this series, please visit this page.