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Amazon customer data to fuel companies’ new ad network

amazon triggitAmazon will soon be branching out into the third-party ad business. According to a press release, Amazon will be partnering with the San Francisco ad tech company Triggit and will basically be launching an advertising network revolving around its visitors’ shopping habits.

Amazon has sold ad space on its own site as well as those sites it owns such as IMDB, but this time it will be buying Web advertising inventory and reselling it to marketers. The iconic e-commerce company will be selling this at a higher rate than other networks. The reason why Amazon’s prices will be justified is that the company will be using its customer and visitor data to “show the right ads to the right users”.

The process could mean lots of easy money for Amazon, though there is the potential for privacy concerns. The way it works is that Amazon uses its huge database of consumer information, containing choice bits such as what you looked at or bought, and creates pools of targets for marketing purposes. Amazon charges Triggit to track the targets through the Web , Triggit purchases ad inventory that the user is looking at and then Amazon pumps out an ad for the specific marketer.

AllthingsDigital points out that this is another take on “retargeting”, which may rankle privacy advocates but is theoretically anonymous. When retargeting, an advertiser will trail a target from site to site which people may not be aware of. The distinction is made that anonymity is preserved because advertisers are tracking Web browsers, not an individual person.

AllthingsD further comments that with Amazon’s huge data set, the company can attract marketers with the holy grail of being able to “close the loop” between advertising and commerce—effectively getting ads in front of customers which will lead them to buy from Amazon. Trigget, in their press release said that Amazon will be working across nine ad exchanges and over four million websites.

Trigget’s CEO Zachery Coelius said, “We are looking forward to working with the Amazon team to hopefully bring some of the amazing innovation they have brought to ecommerce to the world of advertising”.

Of course he’s happy, he’ll be part of something big enough to rival Google’s advertising network.

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