If you've ever searched for a product on Google, you've seen ads from a bunch of companies looking to make you their customer. But soon you'll likely see more ads from companies that already count you as a customer, and not only when you're searching on Google.
aking a page from Facebook's playbook, Google is beginning to let advertisers upload lists of their customers' email addresses in order to target those people with ads when searching on Google, watching videos on YouTube or checking email on Gmail. Eventually brands will also be able to target people that Google identifies as having similar characteristics to the people in their email lists.
To accomplish this customer matching, Google will be cross-referencing brands' email lists with the email addresses tied to people's Google accounts, the majority of which are Gmail addresses though people can use other email providers to sign up for a Google account. A Google spokeswoman declined to say how many Google accounts there are. Google will use a process called "hashing" to disguise the email addresses on both sides of the match and prevent any personally identifiable information from being exposed.
source: Advertising Age
By: Tim Peterson