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Is adblocking the threat many fear it is?

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The makers of Adblock Plus claim that their software is being used on more than 100 million devices around the world. Is this something that should concern us? Sources speculate that by the end of 2016, there will be over 6.4 billion connected ‘things’ in the world, which is a 30% year-on-year increase. Adblocking sounds like a threat, but in 2012 ComScore said 5.3 trillion ads were shown which demonstrates what a tiny effect adblocking is likely to have on the online advertising industry. Even as the number of ad blocking users increases, the number of devices per capita is also on the rise and so the number of display impressions in market.

It is certainly an issue which needs careful surveillance and which has caught Google’s eye. But instead of trying to sidestep ad blocking tech, their approach is focused on the users’ experience of the ad. The primary reason for ad blocking is because an ad is intrusive or annoying and Google is implementing a scheme to improve the quality of their ads so that users don’t have a negative experience and so don’t use ad blocking. Google’s new creative standards are likely to affect all Google sites, YouTube and sites available through their DoubleClick ad exchange.

In the medium term, advertisers should be aware that creative requirements to run across the Google Stack could change. One way to ensure high relevance is through dynamic creative templates which pull onsite images through into creative – great for retargeting. Ultimately, this is likely to improve the way we buy ads online because creative execution will need to improve, ads will have to be highly relevant, and your audience will need to be as targeted as possible.