Will the advent of mobile ad blocking,change the way advertisers reach out to audiences when they are on the move? Hunterlodge's Head of Media weighs in with his thoughts.
Recent research from Adobe and anti-ad blocking firm Page Fair, has set the cost of ad blocking at $40billion for publishers by the end of 2016. Ad blocking software has been on the rise, with more and more European audiences likely to block ads on their content hubs costing publishers a fortune in loss of commercial content. The advent of mobile ad blocking, which is used increasingly in India and China, will change the way advertisers reach out to audiences when they are on the move.
Our own Head of Media, Paul Phillips, weighs in with his thoughts...
The biggest challenge to advertisers will be in reaching and engaging Millennials – a cohort that is already disengaged with traditional offline channels and is clearly putting up the barricades in digital environments too. In June, a YouGov study revealed that 34% of 18-34 year olds are already using ad blocking software and, with the emergence of that software on Smartphones – devices which, TouchPoints informs us, 76% of Millennials “could not imagine life without” – there is little doubt that the majority will make use of it there too: 66% of 18-34 year olds would “stop watching ads if [they] had the technology”.
And that’s a shame, because this young, tech-savvy generation clearly see value in timely, targeted advertising. In my research, Familiarity, Frequency and Fine Lines, co-authored with InSkin Media last year, those panellists aged 18-34 were broadly warmer to digital commerce, being 60% more likely to find online advertising ‘exciting’ and different to other forms of advertising. They see genuine utility, being 36% more likely than their elders to “welcome information on [their] mobile phone that’s relevant to [their] immediate location”.
And, at Hunterlodge, we’ve seen this receptiveness in action: our recent Mobile Display campaigns on behalf of University clients, acutely geo-targeted to within 10m of key feeder schools, have driven bumper registrations to their Open Days and have garnered healthy lead pools for re-engagement during this week’s Clearing process.
Clearly, with the right demo- and geographical targeting – and with a measured approach to remarketing (deploying messages that move the narrative on and sensible frequency capping) – we can make Mobile advertising palatable.
But to keep the channel open, big conversations need to happen fast: the biggest ad makers need to engage with the biggest publishers to agree on the kind of ads they think would be acceptable and possible on mobile. But smaller conversations need to happen too: brands should engage with, and educate, their most loyal consumers on the utility of Mobile advertising. And if done in a compelling way, then maybe those consumers will use those devices for their primary purpose: to spread the word.