18 to 34-year-olds are the most sought after age demographic of consumers, however they are increasingly becoming "adlergic." With the current state of privacy, is digital advertising dead?
With institutional pressures limiting the effectiveness of ad delivery algorithms and consumers demanding greater privacy, it begs the question, how will brands reach prospective customers in the future?
Privacy in Advertising
I started using ad blockers when I was working in IT because I wanted to prevent malicious ads, but after transitioning to advertising, I wanted to understand advertising strategies other brands were using.
As a marketing manager and an SEO enthusiast, my job is to improve our client’s website, research their competitors, and stay relevant to industry news. Without ad blockers, this becomes a pain.
Say you visit a website like Forbes or Business Insider – fairly reputable outlets – and before you even start reading the article you need to close three popups and turn off an HTML5 ad playing a video with sound. Then, you have to tiptoe around native advertising and sponsored links. It's a nightmare and super distracting.
With privacy-focused browsers, you get the content without the BS. It saves a lot of time, and it’s a much nicer user experience. Occasionally, you’ll encounter a paywall, and when you do, find another source.
The era of cheap, competition-free ads with unlimited targeting options is dying. From here on out Facebook Advertising will only get more regulated and diverse. This is great for consumers. Advertisers have to get more creative. This bilateral pressure is forcing advertisers to be more vigilant and think harder about how they promote their client’s products and services.
Great content, like great ads, will stand the test of time, and not a picture that you spent 10 minutes choosing from iStock for an impression-based campaign on Facebook.
How are new advertising platforms different?
The other day I was researching workplace management and saw an ad from Monday.com on alternative search engine called DuckDuckGo. When I saw their ad, I thought, “Cool, here's a forward-thinking brand that respects people's privacy.”
DuckDuckGo offers advertising, but the targeting options are only contextual using keyword groups. Because DuckDuckGo doesn't track its users, advertisers can't target people based on their interests and behaviors.
If you look at Google for the same search term, you'll see some brands you recognize and a host of brands you've never heard of. Google is saturated.
So, when you use a search engine like DuckDuckGo, which receives over 25 million queries a day, and there's only one ad, it immediately builds trust with a consumer.
I recently went all in on privacy and started using the Brave browser. In the first two weeks, it blocked over 13,000 ads, 500 trackers, and saved me 12 minutes just by ignoring to load tracking scripts.
The Brave browser will eventually have ads too, but it will use a different system where people will get paid to view ads using a cryptocurrency known as Basic Attention Token (BAT). Although this model of paying consumers for watching ads hasn't be tested, it could be the future.
Although it might seem like, this is an end of an era, with alternative search engines, browsers, and advertising platforms gaining traction, digital advertising isn't dying, it's just shifting.
Are you looking for creative ways to reach prospects beyond traditional digital advertising channels? Work with a Los Angeles Digital Advertising Agency that thrives at working outside the box.