How Brands Can Overcome the Rise of Ad Blocking Software
As our lives became more digitalized there were more opportunities for brands and marketers to connect with consumers and send out advertising messages.
Today, as I casually scroll through my Facebook and Instagram feed, I’m targeted with ads that I should be interested in - according to information gathered from my searching and online behaviour patterns. Facebook adverts are now able to remind me of the pair of shoes I looked at on that online store, as well as a place to repair my iPhone screen.
When advertising messages first popped into our social feeds uninvited, many consumers felt these messages were invasive and were completely put off by the brands sending them out. Online advertising has become as unwanted as a Facebook friend request from your boss. As a result, ad-blocking software became more in demand.
Although ad blocking software has been around for quite some time it was never as in demand. With more consumers using the software it became a financially vexing problem for publication companies and advertisers. It’s been calculated that publication companies and advertisers lose a total of $22 billion in advertising revenue as a result of ad blocking software.
The software is also most popular amongst millennials - a demographic most valued by brands. According to eMarketer 34% of internet users between the ages of 16 to 24 and 31% of those between 25 to 35 years of age, use ad blocking software.
How can brands ensure their ads don’t drive consumers to download ad blocking software?
1. Make sure your ads are relevant:
Going back to my social feeds, when I get retargeted on an ad, I don’t feel as compelled to block advertisements that are relevant to me. If I’ve looked at a dress online and get retargeted the advertisement I often click on the ad again to either purchase the dress or see what else I can find in that store. If however, I saw an advertisement of a hardware store I’d definitely download an ad blocking software immediately!
2. Make sure your ads are rich media ads
Rich media ads include advanced features such as videos, images, and audio which encourages users to engage with the advertisement. According to eMarketing, rich media advertisements have a higher click through and engagement rate than standard banner advertisements. In light of this, brands need to avoid using the standard banner ads. Consumers have seen so many of them, they’ve trained their brains to completely ignore them.
3. Use influencer marketing!
One of the most effective ways for brands to overcome ad blocking software is using influencers to deliver your brand message to the right audience. One of the most important steps in adopting an influencer marketing strategy is ensuring brands find influencers that best align with their brand, as this remains one of the biggest challenges in influencer marketing.
By leveraging an influencer's audience, brands can ensure their message gets to an audience who is already probably interested in their product/brand. Though the Federal Trade Commission is clamping down on both influencers and brands to disclose when content is sponsored, if the content is great, consumers won’t care whether it’s sponsored or not.