The internet is buzzing with ways to scare marketers about changes to ad blocking, new software and new rules, but no one is talking about the solution.
In an article published by TechCruch, it’s appears that Apple has taken the initiative to allow ad blocking by approving an ad blocker app in their App Store. This app, when downloaded, can block ads even in native apps including Apple News.
Meanwhile, Google is also be attempting to counter the threat from ad-blocking by radically improving the loading speed of web pages on smartphones and tablets.
Ad-blocking is said to derail the growth of $60 billion USD online ad industry. But should online retail business owners really be concerned? Will this stop your precious ads for making an impression on potential shoppers? My answer is NO.
For one, your online strategy shouldn’t be about shoving your business in the faces of online users through random ads. Let’s leave the push strategy for traditional media. It should be about creating a relationship to a targeted group through engaging and valuable content. Then using these people to help you find more people like them or on a similar buying journey
So today, I’d like to share 5 things marketers can do to make ad-blocking a non issue:
Fact: Your email database are your supreme loyalists. Nothing beats email, not even the best of ads.
- 91% of consumers check their email accounts every day
- Over 80% of consumers prefer email as the main method of communication with companies ;
- and most importantly, when marketed through email, consumers spend 138% more than when the don’t.
The recent introduction of Google’s Customer Match and Similar Audience to the online industry is also expected to bring email marketing to a whole new level. Customer Match enables advertisers to create Google Ads targeting email lists, while Similar Audiences allows advertisers to create a new audience who have similar interests the users found in the list uploaded.
Fact: Your customer’s opinion matters more to her other friends compared to your online ads. This is why you should never underestimate the power of word of mouth.
- According to Nielsen, 92% of consumers believe recommendations from friends and family over all forms of advertising.
- Jonah Berger, a Wharton professor, author, and marketing expert with 10 years of research in word-of-mouth psychology, says that word of mouth is ten times more effective than a traditional ad.
- Referrals are just as important to businesses as new customers. In fact, referred customers are more profitable every day compared to other customers.
Ratings and Reviews
Fact: New customers trust the opinion of your old customers better than your ad copy.
- Consumer reviews are significantly more trusted (nearly 12 times more) than descriptions that come from manufacturers, according to eMarketer.
- According to Reevoo stats, 50 or more reviews per product can mean a 4.6% increase in conversion rates and 18% uplift in sales.
- Site visitors who interact with both reviews and customer questions and answers are 105% more likely to purchase while visiting, and spend 11% more than visitors who don’t interact with UGC.
Fact: Consumers believe in the bloggers and Youtubers they follow more than they believe in ads.
- In a survey conducted by Vocus and Brian Solis, 62% of the respondents said that they follow an influencer because of the content they create.
- According to Technorati’s 2013 Digital Influence Report, bloggers are the third most powerful online influencers of purchase decisions right after retail sites and brand sites, with 31% of consumers stating that their decision to buy a product had been influenced by something that they previously read in a blog.
Fact: Organic wins most of the time.
- According to a research from GroupM UK and Nielsen based on a sample of 1.4 billion searches, 94% search engine users prefer to click on organic results compared to paid results and ads.
- Only 6% of online traffic comes from paid advertising because consumers want organic content that can actually solve their problems.
If there’s one thing that these statistics above tell us, it’s that there are more things we should focus on instead of worrying about ad-blocking apps and tools. While ads are important, they shouldn’t be our primary way of acquiring and nurturing our customers. In fact, they should only be a stepping stone so leads are made aware that we have valuable content, resources, and services to offer.