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Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

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# 1
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My speculation is that the unknown are people who either very inactive online, or don't use Chrome browser and don't use Gmail, so Google can't use the website data collected as it would in Chrome to analyze the online behavior in order to determine the user's age, gender, etc. Is this correct?

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Accepted by topic author Richard L
April 2017

Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

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# 2
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Hi @Richard L,

 

You are right. AdWords can't know or infer the demographics of all people. “Unknown” refers to people whose age, gender, parental status, or household income we haven’t identified.

 

Exclude the "Unknown" demographic category only if you're sure you want to restrict your campaign to a narrow audience. Excluding "Unknown" might prevent a substantial number of people from seeing your ads, some of whom you might want to reach.

 

For more detailed information.Please refer to this article.

 

Regards,

Vamshi.

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Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Richard L
April 2017

Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 2
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

Hi @Richard L,

 

You are right. AdWords can't know or infer the demographics of all people. “Unknown” refers to people whose age, gender, parental status, or household income we haven’t identified.

 

Exclude the "Unknown" demographic category only if you're sure you want to restrict your campaign to a narrow audience. Excluding "Unknown" might prevent a substantial number of people from seeing your ads, some of whom you might want to reach.

 

For more detailed information.Please refer to this article.

 

Regards,

Vamshi.

Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor

@Vamsi R is correct. "Unknown" means users when the system cannot infer based on reliable data  their age and gender.  They do not  necessarily have to be signed in into a Google account.

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

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# 4
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Here's a follow-up question, does interest targeting work on unknown users? Because if the system doesn't have reliable data then I would guess it cannot tell who's a music lover or who's been shopping for cars either. The reason I bring this up is because our business relies heavily on interest targeting and from our data the cost per conversion for unknown group is typically higher than the rest, which got me to think if using topic targeting instead would be a better alternative. 

Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor

Demographic reporting is different from targeting by interests. This algorithm is different. You can target by interestד, but if added demographicת and the info is "unknown", the user is excluded. Since interests are more easily identified, I do not recommend targeting  BOTH.

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Who are the "unknown" people in demographic targeting?

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# 6
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Interesting, from my experience I have created ad groups only targeting unknown users in demographics with interest targeting and I have been able to get a lot of traffic with much lower cpv. The average cpv for unknown is usually about half as much as ad groups targeting 35+ yr olds with the same interests, and traffic is sometimes less, sometimes the same, and sometimes 3-6 times more than the 35+, each city in the U.S. is different.