Sorrell warns of digital ad backlash

Sorrell warns of digital ad backlashWPP boss Sir Martin Sorrell has thrown his weight behind growing concerns about the effectiveness of digital media by claiming the group’s clients are increasingly wary of the channel, following evidence many online ads they pay for go unseen.
His remarks follow a huge rise in the take-up of ad blocking software, which, according to a recent report from PageFair and Adobe, is expected to wipe out nearly £50bn worth of global online advertising next year.
Meanwhile, European ad verification company Meetrics has calculated that £485m worth of online ads have never even been seen, due to issues with programmatic buying.
As part of its response, the Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) UK recently mounted a stiff defence of the industry by launching a week-long campaign clarifying its position on each of the five biggest concerns facing the sector, including ad viewability.
It stated: “The IAB believes in maximising ad viewability. Working across the industry with accredited technology partners to develop cross platform standards, our goal is to achieve effective viewability, engagement and attention for advertisers’ online campaigns.”
Sorrell’s group does not appear to have been hit yet, however. WPP’s latest results show a UK revenue increase of 9.7% to £860m, with the group’s global pre-tax profit reaching £709.7m, up 45.6% in constant currency.
While some the rise was attributed to improved operating performance, the majority was put down to what it called “net exceptional gains on the sale and revaluation of investments”.
Revenue was reported at £5.84bn, up 6.4% in constant currency, in the six months to 30 June 2015.

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2 Comments on "Sorrell warns of digital ad backlash"

  1. Sorrell issues warning over #digital #advertising backlash http://t.co/ciDZprOIkT #directmarketing #digitalmarketing #data @WPP

  2. Brands should rightly be worried about the findings that many online ads they pay for go unseen. However, pointing the finger at programmatic buying isn’t helpful. 

    Programmatic and RTB are complex but powerful media planning and buying techniques, which require specialist skill sets, experience, good analytical skills and strong media relationships in order to be fully exploited. This is especially true when considering direct buys via private marketplaces (PMPs).

    People need to be at the heart of programmatic campaigns in order to manage them dynamically and to apply human judgment alongside software driven optimisations. 

    As media planning evolves to include more programmatic targeting, it will be the human intervention that delivers the full potential of all channels and prevents these viewability issues from occurring in the first place. 

    Andrew Burgess, Founder and CEO of the equimedia Group

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