A friend recently “informed” me of a tool that blocks online ads. Truth be told, I’ve been using the application for years now!
While I do believe in free expression, am generally anti-censorship, and feel there is a time and place for all web content (even advertisements), today’s marketing campaigns have become invasive and beyond aggressive.
Back in the “old days,” online marketing was resigned mostly to banner ads. While it’s true that some of them used ‘flashy’ elements in attempts to attract attention, most advertisers took a ‘conservative’ approach.
This may have been due — at least in part — to the rather limited technological resources available at the time, and even a certain skepticism amongst many who wanted to “see what this Internet is all about” before allocating huge amounts of time, resources, and money into this aspect of marketing.
Today, of course, the web — both websites and social media — must be an integral part of any successful marketing campaign. But the material does not have to be so invasive.
In Your Face
Today’s Internet is cluttered with:
- fly-out ads
- floating banners
- Flash elements
- ‘pulse’ ads that require a user to physically ‘x’ out of them in order to view a page
- and more
So it’s no wonder that the demand for an ad-free user experience is stronger now than ever before. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
(Almost) Full Circle
If advertisers would step back and take a more relaxed approach, most web users would be more willing to accept a compromise. It is similar to an argument. If both parties are shouting, resolution is all but impossible. But when the voice of reason is offered in a calm, controlled manner, common ground is soon realized.
Today’s advertisers need to be willing to tone down their current aggressive stance in an effort to reach that common ground, even if it means they may — at least initially — have less eyes on their messages. In the long run, they would see an increase in sales and profit, as well as a rebuilding of trust from a currently apathetic consumer community.
by Enid Ahylhienatta
Residential Life Magazine