Do you hate ads?

In a former life I executed a study to understand people that claimed to hate advertising. It was an interesting research project and I wasn't sure what to expect, but we did find that to avoid ads these people either used technology or just went off the grid (i.e. didn't watch TV, etc.).

As advertising professionals we often forget that there are people that hate what we do, and even if the majority of people don't hate it, they wouldn't go out of their way to watch our ads if our ads didn't interrupt what they were doing.

A few principles came out of this study that are worth thinking about:

  • Courtesy: it is important to understand that we want consumers' attention, but they aren't required to give it to us
  • Control: the age of interruption might not be over with yet, but it is getting close. Consumers have control and want it more and more
  • Creativity: entertaining and clever ads are recognized for their efforts
  • Content: in exchange for their time, consumers desire something in return, whether it be new content, free stuff or something else, they want a value exchange
Now, just for fun check out ad block plus, a Firefox add-on that allows people to block all Internet ads and Commercials I Hate, a website whose stated focus is,
"I started this site in 1997 because the advertising industry thinks we're stupid. Commercials assume the worst about us. Commercials use ugly stereotypes to appeal to the lowest common denominator. That's nasty and insulting."
Those are some harsh, but sobering words that we all need to take to heart. What do you all think?

20 comments:

Anonymous said...

I love creative, tricky, inteligent or funny ads, but I hate TOO MANY ads. I have already blocked ads in my firefox few months ago. Pop-up windows drive me crazy! Billboards on the streats are everywhere. And that's why I hate it. And I do not switch tv to another channel, when there are ads shown.

Leo said...

I've been a long time user of adblocking software, DVR's, etc.
Still I am a long time subscriber of this blogs RSS feed.
I've found that I actually click targeted ads (the google text ads) sometimes, but random banner ads (especially when they are blinking) get dumped on the Adblock blacklist.

Cheers

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