Advertising Mistake or Audience-driven Copywriting?

I found a display ad today that is either highly targeted to my sense of humor or is simply a mistake. Take a look.

Screen Shot 2013-11-22 at 12.25.22 PM

I’m pretty skeptical when it comes to advertising of any kind (imagine that!), but the product presentation and the Target icon in this ad, lead me to believe that this ad with place-holder copy wasn’t spam. So I clicked on it. It turns out, I was nabbed by the powerful and useful but ever allusive cookie monster (ad re-targeting to be more accurate). A company who provides “interest-based advertisements” used a web cookie to target this ad to me and those like me.

I can’t imagine Target would want an ad out there without descriptive copy. However, if user studies indicate that  copywriters like me will click-through an ad like this one, I can understand why they might place an ad sans description.

The beauty of re-marketing and re-targeting your online ad placements is that your ads get in front of an audience that’s already shown interest in your product or service through their online behavior (visiting your website, visiting a partner’s website, clicking on an ad previously, etc).  While, I don’t know for certain that this ad was specifically re-marketed to copywriters or communications professionals, I do know the ad did it’s job on me. Click? Check.  Insert concluding sentence here.

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