Here’s a quick meta story: FriendFeed pointed me to Simon Young’s Google Reader shared item of a post by John Hagel about the shift of (primarily digital) advertising. Before you consider my thoughts on advertising, pause and realize just how cool (weird, meta) that little path to the data truly is.
Curse you Thank you, Louis Gray, for getting me to look at FriendFeed once more.
In his post, John mentions how advertisers see the coming shifts in their business:
In the advertising world, multiple shifts are piling on top of each other and it is often hard to keep track of them, much less understand their implications. Letâ€™s look at just some that are re-shaping the advertising world:
- Shifts from advertising placed in digital content to ads placed in social networks and applications
- Shifts from digital advertisements delivered through conventional PCâ€™s to a growing array of mobile devices, with an increasing ability to target messages based on the physical location of the person
- Shifts in the behavior of digital users in their responsiveness to advertisements online […]
These three shifts made me frustrated, because I see them as advertisers just lazily moving their target slightly in-stream, but without adapting much beyond making a course correction for how digital users respond. Thankfully, John schools people who consider this the right way to do it a little further down the page.
John points out something really important:
Why will the Internet ultimately undermine advertising? A number of factors come into play:
- The Internet proliferates resources, all competing for the attention of people. Even the most targeted and relevant ads over time will have a harder and harder time rising above the noise.
- The Internet creates powerful options for people in terms of how they become aware of new products and services and how they obtain information about the products and services that are relevant to them.
- The Internet offers increasingly powerful tools to filter and block advertisements (and, yes, product placements will be an interesting alternative for a while, until even that space becomes so cluttered that people will mentally filter out the products)
It’s funny. The article is long-ish, and when I read the very first part of it, I was getting frustrated with what John reported about the way advertisers are viewing the online play. Not with what John Said, but instead, the mindset of advertisers as covered by him. I’m glad that I continued through, however, because his perspective on what advertisers must consider to adapt and survive are a very worthwhile payload.
See the full article here.
What do you think about the future of online advertising? Are you okay with ads in social networks? How do we balance comfortable with effective?