Marketers reaction to AdBlock being sold

AdBlock got sold last week. Who the buyer is, what the buyer’s intentions are and how this will affect advertising remains unclear.

What is clear although, is that the demand for AdBlock are increasing. The almost 100 million users has downloaded the plugin because of their tiredness of ads. Some say that advertisers only have themselves to the blame for this new ad-avoiding trend, but how should we marketers using the platforms now act?

First of all, users blocking ads doesn’t mean online marketing being dead. Far from. It doesn’t either mean display advertising is being dead. Partly as Google & Amazon and other big companies are on the AdBlock whitelist. Partly because there are other ways of display advertising.

People still react to display advertising

Even except for Google’s Display network (which is on the whitelist) you see display advertising everywhere. It is in your LinkedIn, Facebook and other Social media feeds, it is in your e-mails and on all YouTube videos.

Linkedin Feed with boosted content

Display advertising on the whitelist

The current whitelist contains more than 300 companies (an amount that might change after this transaction). One of those companies are Google with their Display network.

As of roughly 100 million users have AdBlock installed, it will be to assume that not all Internet users will be reachable through display advertising. These could instead be reached through channels as Facebook & LinkedIn feed ads and YouTube commercials. The strategy is to link your ads to valuable content and convert your customers in an educating and engaging way.

Understand your marketing ROI

When users block ads, obviously ads won’t be shown to them. For a small business owner, that means he won’t have to pay for those leads. Rather, he could focus on the users that don’t block ads. As these users will be used to seeing ads all the time there are three type of user:

  1. The user that hates all type of ads, being daily spammed by banners
  2. Ready-to-buy customer who love buying things online & appreciate seeing re-targeted ads
  3. Un-technical user, occasionally doing online purchases.

With the use of segmentation, you can use interests and demographics to segment these groups and target them accordingly. Most industries would only want to target the customer with his credit card ready to buy, and can target him with previous purchase behaviors and effective re-targeting. The other groups can be targeted with unique ad-formats.

Convert in an educating and engaging way

Banners has 0.1% click-through-rate and with AdBlocks popularity it is clear that user behavior has changed. To convince a customer to buy your product, you need to first educate the person in the subject, make him aware of the potential problem, honestly explain how your sector can solve the problem and close with why your product beats the competition. This is targeted content marketing in a nutshell.

Fill customer needs with content marketing

You probably heard the expression that content is king. That is true to an extent. SEO and other digital campaigns heavily rely on content. However, the Internet is today flooded with content, so in other to attract and convert your audience, the content needs to be extraordinary. This doesn’t mean extraordinary as in a school viewpoint. Rather, the content can be grammatically wrong yet still engage and convert well. The importance is in relevance, creating decision and advising rather than pitching.

Emotion creates decisions

When you have your readers in the net, you want them to make the right decision by performing a specific action on your webpage. The decision convincing should be well-planned and shouldn’t be too pushed to the reader so he don’t get away frightened.

A great way to drive your audience into decision making is by speaking about how your offer can solve their problems, rather than explaining how the offer is better than its competitors or has taken long time to develop. See it from the customer’s perspective. When the customer got his concerns answered, he’ll be more interested in what you got to offer.

People are driven by emotions. In content creation, emotions can be used to get attention and to create motivation. The attention part is commonly used, with controversial titles. Motivation is a bit harder to create, but can provide great conversions if successfully used. Motivation will change the audience’s desire and make them perform something favoring both you and your customer.

Motivation in content can be done with

  • Peer pressure (people don’t want to miss out what other people like)
  • Urgency to buy (limited time forces a buy decision)
  • Reducing anxiety (making the customer feel safe)

Relevance to the audience

The expression “write for your reader” is an evergreen expression, but it is as actual today as when it was originally said. The first step of creating a relevant content marketing campaign is to identify your audience, and then segment these into different groups.

The segmentation makes it easier for you to create content that is even more specific to the reader. The segmentation can be done by using e-book, blog post titles that only attracts specific interests. A common segmentation is to sort on experience. I recommend that every fifth blog post is addressed to advanced readers.

Don’t pitch, give advice

The days of promotional advertisement are long gone. The railroad billboards don’t convert nearly as well as a well-planned tutorial about a problem, with advice that the problem can be even easier solved using a specific product. Today’s Internet users, especially Twitter users, prefer to discover products rather than being forced into buying a product. This makes the audience feel smart and independent.

Creating helpful articles that answers to the audiences concern does not only make the customer feel safe choosing your company and reduces customer support but also increases the likelihood that your content will be shared in social media.

Close with a call-to-action

Even though the article and the content itself should be purely helpful, and that you shouldn’t try to push your readers, you can still end with a friendly call-to-action. One way to get conversions is through mentioning legitimate reasons why your product would fit for the audience’s specific needs. You can also promote your business in sidebars and banners, thought you should be careful not overdoing it.