MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif. – Google’s announcement of its coming ad blocker for its Chrome web browser (the most-used web browser in the U.S., with a 44.5 percent market share) is spurring comments from ad blocking companies and marketers.
The Wall Street Journal has reported several ad-blocking companies say they won’t be replaced by Google’s efforts. But some marketing insiders are viewing Google’s move more warily, with trepidation to the growing power of Google.
Preethy Vaidyanathan, a senior vice president at Tapad, told Direct Marketing News Google’s foray into ad blocking is a conflict of interest. “This is Google’s monolithic attempt to write the rules to ad blocking, while simultaneously circumventing its own policies to ensure publishers and Google still get paid,” he said. “What marketers can learn from Google’s ad blocker launch is the importance of personalization and creativity in attracting consumers. Brands that solidly understand who their ideal customers are will be able to pivot their advertisements to provide informative, engaging and educational utility.”
Udayan Bose, CEO of search marketing company NetElixir, told Direct Marketing News budgets and focus may shift toward in-app advertisements due to GoogleFilter. “Once the ad block feature gets implemented, the majority of users would not have to go for a third-party software to block ads,” Bose said. “This will effectively reduce Google’s dependency on software like Adblock Plus, and result in significant revenue growth for Google.”
Bose added he believes the ad blocker will not make a big impact on AdWords/DoubleClick display ads. “In fact, the market share may marginally grow as smaller advertising platforms with borderline ad practices, like text-link ads and interstitial ads, apparently will be thrown under the bus,” he said.
Direct Marketing News also spoke with Tim Sleath, vice president of product management at Exponential. He said the marketing world is seeing “the friction as the internet develops from something open into a collection of very large walled gardens – walled jungles? – with the open part of the internet increasingly marginalized – and that should give everyone pause.”
And Rich Sutton with Trusted Media Brands told Direct Marketing News he supports Google’s move. “It’s in everyone’s best interest, including Google’s, to improve the audience experience and eliminate advertising that is unreasonably interruptive,” Sutton said. “This industry shift allows the ad tech ecosystem to be held accountable for creating experiences that are truly consumer-friendly.”
Google says the technology is expected to arrive early in 2018 with the aim is to help publishers shift to less intrusive ad formats.