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What Ad-Blocking Means for Advertisers

With the recent upgrade to the iOS 9, a new feature, Content Blockers, was introduced. Content Blockers allow users to install ad-blocking applications from the Apple Store. This software has been created for users to increase page load time, improve battery life and protect the user’s privacy. Advertising, trackers, and other third-party scripts are blocked in the Safari mobile browser while this app is installed. What does this mean for the digital media and advertising industry? Although online advertising will become more difficult, could this new technology actually be a good thing for these companies and organizations?

Although ad blockers have been available for desktop computer and Android users for a few years, the introduction of the new Apple software has caused panic in the marketing and advertising industry. This panic is due to the significant number of iPhone users, which is around 97 million in the U.S. alone. According to Adobe, the number of ad-blocking software users has grown 41% in the past 12 months and there is currently 198 million users.

The key to successful marketing and advertising in spite of ad-blocking applications is advertising in apps. According to Flurry, 86% of the US mobile consumers’ time is spent in apps. Brands will have to rely on native advertising.

But this is not the only reason why ad blocking may not be a bad thing for the digital media and advertising industry. With the release of new ad-blocking applications, companies aren’t spending money on mobile users who don’t view advertisements. By eliminating the ads on their browser, the user is eliminating something they don’t want to see in the first place. Advertisers will be forced to evolve their business model to fit the consumer’s ever-changing wants and needs. Brands will now have to focus on creating advertising that the consumer actually wants to view.

All of this was in jeopardy when “Been Choice” was available to mobile users. The app blocked ads in several apps, including Apple News. Although Apple did ban this app due to user security issues, they also did themselves a favor. The app developers are in progress to resubmit the app after they remove ad blocking for Facebook, Google, Yahoo, and Pinterest. Stay tuned to see how all this plays out.

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