The rise of adblocks is currently posing one of the greatest threats to advertising as we know it. But the question is: Is this a good thing or a bad thing to us online marketers?
According to Pagefair, the use of Adblocks has been constantly on the rise, the usage of which has grown 48% in the US in the last year alone. In July 2015, Pagefair’s statistics estimates that 45 million people in the US were using the various forms of Ad blockers, and around 198 million people worldwide, a number which is ever-growing, and shows no signs of slowing down, quite the contrary. This adds up to a cost of $21.8 billion just in the year 2015, and a predicted cost of $41.4 billion in the year 2016. This is all money that is poured into online advertisement, which people never even see – it is quite literally like pouring money down the drain. To add fuel to the fire, Ad blockers are not only limited to PC’s, they can just as easily be used on any mobile device. Admittedly at first glance this seems like terrible news, but is it really?
People have adopted the use of these Ad blockers for a reason. They feel overwhelmed and annoyed by the constant bombardment of ads of every type, every time they turn on their device, when all they really want to do is access the information they are looking for. If we are being completely honest, I am sure this is a problem that all of us have faced at one point or another. It slows us down, distracts us from what we want with what we don’t, and is just generally quite annoying. Imagine walking into a supermarket with the specific purpose to buy some milk, and along the way having random people jump out at you with signs, trying to sell you everything from a vacuum cleaner to a flight to Australia.
What Adblocks are essentially doing is protecting users and their interests, who do not want to be bothered by advertisements that in no way interest them. Which places the question: if they are here to help users, and so are we, why would we not support them? The truth is that they help us just as much. If people are constantly bombarded with ads of every shape, size and topic, there comes a time when they become desensitized, and ignore every ad they see (like with junk mail), whether it may be helpful to them or not. However, if they only have access to and contact with advertisement that they truly feel benefits them, they will be much more open and prone to paying attention to the ones they come in contact with.
So how do we make Adblocks work to our advantage? We truly believe that the answer to this conundrum is to improve our user’s experience by using Native Advertising. Native Advertising is when we make our advertisements blend into the content of the environment in which they are placed – high quality, relevant information that will undoubtedly be useful to the visitor. It’s about placing quality over quantity. Not flooding users with endless streams of information, in hope that some of it will stick (even a blind chicken finds a kernel of corn now and then), but focusing our efforts on being in the right place at the right time, with the right information. It is a win-win situation for all of those involved.
Now to be clear, it is still advertising – one must pay for the content placed – and users are fully aware of this fact, but the point is to make it so pertinent and appropriate, that it will be sure to please the user, and go undetected by Adblocks.
In an ever-changing world where, as individuals, we have an endless amount of information and choice available at the simple click of a button, it means that as companies, we have to fight that much harder to become our client’s product or service of choice, to maintain their loyalty and live up to their expectations. So if Ad blockers are in their interest, it implies that it ought to be just as much an interest of ours. If you can’t fight them, join them in the cause they support. Put your users and clients first by protecting their interests and they will thank you for it. Help both yourself and your audience by using Native Advertising!
About the author Kelly Rogan is the international business developer and marketing strategist at Cyberclick. Manages content strategy, web site traffic growth, lead generation and increases brand presence and business opportunities in International markets.
Kelly Rogan is the international business developer and marketing strategist at Cyberclick. Manages content strategy, web site traffic growth, lead generation and increases brand presence and business opportunities in International markets.