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Online Advertising: "Craft or crap?"

     
6:53 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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One of the World's largest advertisers, Procter and Gamble said in 2012 it would make savings of $1 billion by better targeting using online and social media.

John Wanamaker, once said: “Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is, I don’t know which half.”
That was a long time back. Now, with digital advertising, and all that wonderful targeting you'd think online advertising was solving that wasted half.
It's suggested that somebody's smelling a rat. At the IAB conference this year, Marc Pritchard from P&G had something to say on the matter, which might be what a number of us have been thinking for a while.

In a speech to the annual conference of the Internet Advertising Bureau in January, the Procter & Gamble boss, Marc Pritchard, said this: “We have seen an exponential increase in, well… crap. Craft or crap? Technology enables both and all too often the outcome has been more crappy advertising accompanied by even crappier viewing experiences… is it any wonder ad blockers are growing 40%?” Online Advertising: "Craft or crap?" [theguardian.com]
7:21 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My view of online advertising:

If I get paid for the space, it's craft, if I don't get paid for the space, it's crap.

Simple and easy to understand. :)
7:22 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Using FB as an example, I have seen so many crap ads, it is pathetic. I especially like the ones where there is a distorted image of a living celebrity (which I wonder if they know their image is being used) and the ad reads "So and so is dead. Learn the secret...) And do not get me started at the click bait ads. Like fake news, it is something sites that offering advertising need to police.
8:05 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Anyone notice the House Ad at the end of the article asking for subscriptions or doanation to the paper? Apparently ad revenue is "dropping fast".
9:21 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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>Anyone notice the House Ad

Yes, and they are not alone in having those ads; I've seen quite a few recently.

I think the real point to the article is that a major advertiser is starting to question the current model. It's not living up to the perceived promise.
11:04 pm on Mar 6, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I think the real point to the article is that a major advertiser is starting to question the current model. It's not living up to the perceived promise.

Of course it isn't. It hasn't for years. And to put the cherry on top, the leading third party networks have, from day one, encouraged, even practiced, all sorts of 'mischievousness'. And what is most telling in all the hullaballoo is the silence of the major agencies for they were and are often complicit.

From 2105, the shot that stunned the ad world: Julie Fleischer of Kraft 'caused' the impressions scandal by reporting that Kraft had rejected 85% of impressions billed by ad networks.

From 2016:
* 80% of enterprise CMO's have never seen quantifiable results from social media.

* the FaceBook video streaming 'miscalculation' (as in overstating by ~75%); for some reason it was worse in Australia at over 94% overstated.

* online ad spending growth in 2016 was half that of 2015.

From this year:
* as engine mentioned, Marc Pritchard of Proctor & Gamble say they will no longer pay agencies or networks that don't use industry-standard viewability metrics, fraud protection, and third-party verification.
Note: his accepted metrics are pretty slack and the fraudsters are generally well ahead of the fraud defences but that third party verification ?should? hit the ad networks black boxes (looking at you FB, G) hard.

* you may remember that last spring, following the Kraft announcement, a new 'standard' of 50% viewable for 1-second was announced for CPM ads.
Lumen Research ran a study that found:
* only 65% of the viewable ads are - drumroll please - actually viewed.
-> 100% served impressions
-> 54% deemed viewable impressions (50% viewable for 1-second)
-> 35% were actually viewed aka eyes actually 'saw' it
* only 9% of served impressions were actually viewed for more than 1-second.

Continuing:
Study after study has concluded that AdWords click through traffic is significantly/largely/mostly bots. The absolute lowest number I've read is "more than 18%", the highest "up to 98%". If we drop these two as outliers we are left with a fairly consistent range between 40% and 60%.

The networks are greedy and keep getting their hands caught in their ever 'improved' cookie jars. And, increasingly, there are only two jars. Outside of China Google and FaceBook account for 72% of online ad revenue. Last year ad spending growth went primarily to Google (+23%) and FaceBook (+68%). However, did you know that for pretty much everyone else 2016 saw a 2-5% drop? As in negative compared to 2015.

While the situation is pure gravy for my direct ad sale revenue in a general sense we are ever closer to a battle of titans: the big advertisers and the big 2-online ad networks. With the ad agencies getting squished in the middle and the smaller publishers getting lambasted. If it weren't for the last I'd say 'have at it!'
12:04 am on Mar 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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More thrilling is this is not that different from the hey day of print media (1940s-1970s), it just happens "in real time" due to the magic of directed electrons over wire, fiber, and the ether. Early ad publishing promises have not been met and the big players (and payers) are having second thoughts.

Fraud and bad reporting happened during Print ... but not to the extent of the net. Print was cleaned up ... or at least managed more sternly ... it is time for web to fall in line.
9:11 am on Mar 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yes, print eventually succumbed to third party audits of circulation figures, etc.
The problem with digital is that it's still in an early stage of development and, for example, FB has had trouble with its metrics. [webmasterworld.com]
Who check the accuracy with this and other platforms. It needs to clean up its act and become compliant with accepted independent audits.

Every advertiser is faced with this problem, and the ads they are paying for is just on a much smaller scale to P&G. The smaller business is not really "heard" in the questioning of the performance of the ads and campaigns. Business will take note of P&G primarily because of their massive buying power.

Fraudulent clicks and the impact of bots is not spoken about enough by all the major businesses, imho. It's the elephant in the room. Google says very little about. I don't doubt it's trying to tackle it, but it's probably a tougher nut to crack.
 

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