Digital advertising has been the norm for years, bringing banners and pop ups to computer screens and devices, at the cost of thousands to businesses large and small. However, these days we’ve grown tired of the constant interruptions from advertising and a new crop of ad blocker apps for mobile devices are now topping the download charts.
Unfortunately the recent popularity of ad blockers is causing a growing problem and concern for businesses. The threat has just become even more serious with Apple’s dramatic move to integrate ad blockers directly into its latest iPhone and iPad operating system, meaning the hottest spot for advertising could potentially become almost worthless.
What does Ad Blocking mean for advertising?
63 per cent of millennials are already using ad blockers proving that the growing trend is greatly reducing the audiences reached through traditional video and banner advertisements. This suggests that the money invested into advertising could now offer a much lower return on investment.
What approach should businesses be taking?
To find a way around and overcome ad blocking, businesses need to examine their target audiences carefully and become more creative in their approach. This should be treated as an opportunity for brands to refresh their digital marketing strategies, investing in well-crafted, inventive and intelligent marketing, and spend less money on traditional advertising.
1. Advertising is not the only way
Advertising is not the only way onto websites and magazine pages. By building relationships with journalists your PR team can secure editorial which promotes your business through opinion pieces, reviews and features, providing similar page coverage as an advert but without the hefty price tag. We call this “earned” coverage, as opposed to “paid for”, and it’s often much more highly regarded by your potential audience.
2. Utilise social media to its maximum potential
Social media offers a unique platform to build a dialogue with consumers and drive traffic to your website. It places you directly in front of your audience in an open and accessible environment, which offers much more potential for building your brand identity than a static, single function advert. A well structured social media management plan designed to optimise on clicks, reach and engagement, with plenty of regular and interesting content, is essential.
3. Offer valuable and useful content to your audience
Well-written, useful articles and advice offered by a brand establishes it as a knowledgeable authority which is proactive and customer focused. This can be in the form of news posts, blogs or enewsletters and helps to build a relationship of trust and reliability (as well as click-throughs) which brings customers back to a website again and again, even in the absence of advertising.
4. Think outside the box
A brand can easily spend thousands on advertising, or, a brand can spend the budget on something much more exciting and attention grabbing. Jaguar recently filmed the new F-Pace SUV performing the world’s biggest ever loop-the-loop as a spectacular launch of their latest model. The stunt made newspaper headlines and news reports around the world with the video clip attracting thousands of views via social media.
So, with evidence showing that mobile traffic is fast surpassing desktop and a reported 82% growth in ad-free browsing, it’s time to think carefully about spending less on advertising and more on a creative PR and marketing strategy to achieve maximum results in 2016.
If you’d like more advice on ways to reach and engage with customers in exciting and effective ways, feel free to contact our team for a chat to discuss our ideas for your business. You can call us on 01926 832395, email on email@example.com or tweet us @RedMarlinPR.