Relevant viewpoint: Better Ads Initiative


charlotteFor many years ads has been an important part of the media ecosystem subsidizing the cost of content and services for consumers. But advertisers and medias meet new challenges as consumers blocks the ads on digital medias. Advertising helps support valuable free content, robust journalism and social connections across the internet. Consumers, however, are increasingly frustrated with ads that disrupt their experience, interrupt content and slow browsing.

This has led to a new initiative from the ad-business; both medias, advertisers, adtech companies and several organizations has teamed up and established “Better Ads”. The Coalition intends to address challenges posed by commercial ad blockers that could result in threatening the ad-supported Internet. As the Internet continues to develop, the consumer online advertising experience likewise must adapt to ensure that it responds to consumers’ evolving expectations.

We have asked Charlotte Thür CEO of IAB Sweden, who is one of the organisations behind Better Ads, to tell us more about the idea.

Q: Who is Better Ads?

The Coalition for Better Ads it’s an American and European IAB initiative. It’s a good and very important global approach that has been to develop a new global recommendation for ad units that is based on a comprehensive study.

Q: What does Better Ads do?

These initial standards will hopefully be an alarm clock for brands, dealers, agencies, publishers and their adtech suppliers to retire the ad formats the study shows annoys consumers. It creates a standard that everyone can relate to.

Q: What is the goal for Better Ads work initiative?

The goal is to improve the ad position and create a better understanding of ad-funded online services and finally retain idea of an open societies and liberal economies.

Q: How does Better Ads involve the consumers in the work?

Consumers have been in focus of The Coalition for Better ads is based on a comprehensive study where consumers compare comparatively different advertisement experiences presented to them while they read online articles. More than 25,000 consumers rated 104 desktop and mobile ad experiences. We know since before that the majority want advertising-funded online services

Q: How can advertiser’s best meet consumers who choose to use an ad blocker?

First and foremost, I see it important to ensure that the site visited by consumers using adblockers always get the information that the site is ad-funded. Many tend to forget this. In Sweden we have an Industry Standard that we call “An Ad Friendly Sweden” (“Ett Annonsvänligt Sverige”), where ad buyers, adtech and publishers jointly decided not to work with some ad units that we know is disrupting formats and ensure that there is always an opportunity for dialogue with consumers visiting these websites about the ads.

Better Ads research

In the first phase of the Coalition’s research, more than 25,000 Internet users in North America and Europe were surveyed about their preferences for different types of online ads. The research included desktop web (55 ad experiences) and mobile web (49 ad experiences). The results of the Coalition’s consumer-focused research define Better Ads Standards that identify the ad experiences that fall beneath a threshold of consumer acceptability. Better Ads Standards reveal the least preferred, most annoying ad experiences that are also most likely to cause consumers to adopt ad blockers.

The research methodology that supports Better Ads Standards is adaptable to measuring consumers’ preferences for particular ad experiences across different global regions, as well as the testing of other digital advertising environments beyond desktop web and mobile web. The Coalition plans to continue conducting research in additional regions and environments to provide a comprehensive understanding of consumer reaction to ad experiences.

We hope that you will feel inspired to join the movement and encourage you to visit webpage and learn more about better ads. You can also download a PDF here.

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