Adblocking Wars: Advertiser Alternatives To Ads
Influencer Marketing Offers Advertisers An Adblocking Solution
Apple's new operating system, iOS9, launched last Wednesday with adblocking tech capabilities. On Thursday, adblocking apps top Apple's app store leaderboard. Although speculation continues to mount on the exact extent of advertising revenue fallout (a recent Pagefair and Adobe joint study currently estimates a 2015 loss of $21.8 billion with close to double that figure, $41.4 billion, for 2016), initial results are indicative of an impending ad block war between brands, publishers, and readers.
image via "An Hour With Safari Content Blocker In iOS9"
The adblocking crisis will undoubtedly hit online publishers the hardest. Some, including the Washington Post (see BuzzFeed's post "Washington Post Declares War On Ad Blockers"), have begun blocking or restricting access to content for readers who have ad blockers installed while others (CBS, Hulu) shut down user functionality when detecting ad block software. Like the common display ad, fancier online video ads are also not exempt from ad blockers -- SecretMedia's recent study illustrates how more than a quarter to two-thirds of video ads are not monetized due to ad blockers. Both CBS's video player and Hulu won't work for viewers with ad blockers on (Ad Age).
While the adblocking dilemma is only at the precipice of what may be "the slow death of the web," advertisers are beginning to evaluate actionable countermeasures including paywalls, whitelisting, and the right native advertising options (Tom's Guide "Ad Block Apocalypse? Here's How To Save The Web"). With native advertising (advertising that is not presented through an ad server), sponsoring blog posts, videos, or social media posts with top social media influencers (see our list of top influencers here for Instagram, YouTube, blogs, and Snapchat) presents advertisers a targeted way to reach audiences without the worry of blocked ads.
Here's a look at why influencer marketing offers advertisers a surefire strategy at effectively circumventing the adblocking crisis:
Why Influencer Marketing Is The Ultimate Adblocking Answer For Advertisers
- It's unblockable. Influencer marketing, as a form of native advertising, is editorial content by nature and served in the same format native to the platform. For instance, a sponsored YouTube video (different from a YouTube video ad) or sponsored blog post with a top YouTuber or blogger functions as both everyday lifestyle content/news whilst also presenting natural and organic brand messaging oftentimes much more targeted and well-suited to the influencer's audience. Because the advertisement is not disseminated by third party ad servers, influencer marketing cannot be blocked.
- Contextual Relevance. In contrast to display ads, marketing with social media influencers provides a high degree of contextual relevancy. The rise of ad blockers can be attributed to the lack of relevancy they provide -- ads are shown to all viewers without consideration to target audiences. With influencer marketing, advertisers can create custom content that is in line with audience tastes and interests.
- Builds Positive Brand Sentiment. As opposed to display ads (often detrimental to brand sentiment), influencer marketing can help serve to build and perpetuate positive brand sentiment. Executed properly, sponsored content with influencers creates a positive feedback experience for brands, influencers, and viewers altogether.
To learn how to execute an influencer marketing campaign, download our free PDF whitepaper here.
- Creative Brand Integrations. As more advertisers, brands, and publishers seek to reach audiences online, marketing with top influencers (ex. YouTubers, Instagrammers, Snapchatters, and bloggers) presents a creative content marketing advantage. Top influencers and creators amass vast audiences by their ability to create content that trends. With the right brand-influencer sponsorship, companies can not only reach coveted online audiences but create content that excites, engages, and converts viewers into lifetime consumers. Check out Castrol's recent creative brand integration with top YouTuber, Austin Evans - with close to half a million views, Castrol's innovative sponsored YouTube video trended with Evans's tech and gaming audience with a behind-the-scenes look at their virtual reality drift project:
- Built in viewership. Top social media influencers have millions of subscribers, followers, and fans who are dedicated to staying up to date with the latest news, trends, and tastes. As such, these dedicated audiences avidly view and curate the content from top tastemakers resulting in highly trafficked sites and well-viewed YouTube channels.
- Built in engagement. Unlike ads, influencer marketing produces content that elicits high levels of audience and consumer engagement (shares, likes, comments, follows).
- It's shareable. Unlike ads, sponsoring content from top social media influencers is not only unblockable by ad block tech, but highly shareable (see creative brand integration point above) and serves to further a brand's key advertising and marketing objectives.
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September 21, 2015 By Evan