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Ad blocking V Click Baby Click

Ad blocking V Click Baby Click

How ad blocking could lead to less but more relevant content being served to you
20.02.16

 

So no surprise as to why ad blockers are so popular with usage of ad blocking software in Ireland soaring, especially on mobile where this is going to really shake up a thing or two.

A recent report from Adobe and Page Fair claims that ad blocking grew by 41% globally over the past 12 months and that there are now 198 million active ad-block users around the world. The same report claims that it’s set to cost nearly $22bn in lost advertising revenue this year.

I don't want to see feminine hygiene products, advice on pensions and ads from Glo Health. So I installed ad blockers on my mobile so start with. Then my desktop and it's great.

Yes I am happy to admit this as display advertising in my view point eats up time, data and energy trying to avoid them.

I'm convinced most mobile touches/interactions with mobile display ads are a result of poor UX. Sometimes you're just trying to scroll to get to the content and an ad loads and takes you away from the content you wanted to read. 

Whoever remembers a display ad anyway?

 

Anyway I digress. 

This doesn't mean I want to shut myself off from companies I like or products that might enrich or compliment my lifestyle.

I just want to rationalise the volume of content that is being served to me, 97% of which is shite. 

It's one of the main reasons I loved Instagram at the beginning as I curated a feed of friends, photographers, brands and art that interested me and complimented my lifestyle. The important point is 'I' curated it. Not a media company. But now even that is changing. The utopia is over.

 

NEW GATE KEEPERS
So that's got me thinking, can ad blockers potentially be new media gate keepers or more importantly the new tool to help me curate and personalise the content (I include advertising in this bracket) I see online.  

Take for example the principle of 'whitelisting' which many of them try to support. Imagine if this service was connected with brands digital platforms.

Obviously I know whitelisting functionality does exist with some ad networks and social networks but no one really knows about it. It's usually hidden and complicated to use. 

What if like email sign ups you go to a brand's site or social channel and opt into communication from them.

What if this also included allowing them to advertise to you via content / ads on sites you visit. Maybe one day this could also affect what ads I get served on my connected tv's once the data is all combined in the future. 

This 'whitelisting' approach means anyone with an ad blocker system enabled would then have better control for who they opt'd to see and who they've blocked. 

Imagine being able to ban those companies you hate hearing from. Wouldn't it be wonderful? Who'd you include. I know who tops my list. 

Perhaps ads could be a two step process where instead of a call to action going off to another page, you start with a call to action to opt in to get info. Then the message you receive from there on in can be more targeted and customised to purchase behaviour or interactions with the brand to bring customers through a journey of discovery, purchase and post purchase support and up selling. 

This way the ads I see would be more relevant to what I'm into and something I've opted into. So you get my attention. 

This would be a better experience for me and better for brands I'm into as my propensity to engage / purchase from them would increase due to building up ongoing comms and interest in what they're doing. 

Much more interesting than seeing generic ads from Glo health or whatever else agencies and publishers are serving at me.

It will be a long time before this happens so I suppose we'll just have to make do with status quo for now and accidentally keep touching banner ads we never meant to.

I'm sure someone somewhere is analysing all these clicks in the meantime and are delighted with themselves.