Buying Audience vs. Premium Content: Beware of Magic Beans
The best way for brands and agencies to avoid this situation is to ensure that they advertise directly with reputable publishers or on a network that features only quality inventory. This isn't just the best way to protect brand equity, it's the optimal method for increasing ROI. We've found that being in a premium environment lends strong credibility to the advertising message, resulting in significantly higher conversions. Even the vast majority of users who don't click on an ad are more likely to get a positive impression of an ad that appears on a premium, branded site because context and reputation matter.
The challenge for brands and advertisers is to find an ad network that isn't trying to sell them magic beans, which is essentially what networks that claim to have the ability to generate ROI from junk inventory are doing. Of course, all ad networks claim to be trustworthy and assert that their network can deliver a high ROI. There are independent ad network rating agencies brand owners can consult.
Advertising exclusively on premium inventory ad networks is a strategy that positions brands and agencies for better results on two levels: one, it puts their products and services in front of an audience that's more likely to make a purchase and, two, it protects their brand from association with questionable and offensive content. While it's true that ad networks that feature only premium content are generally more expensive than cut-rate networks that are less choosy about where they place ads, it's equally true that in this instance brands and agencies get what they pay for. The bottom line for ad purchasers is this: Beware of magic beans.
Ash Nashed is the founder and CEO of Adiant, the parent company of Adblade.com, one of the industry's largest and safest advertising networks with over 140 million unique monthly users. Ash can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.