Beware! The Biggest Boycott in History

Is programmatic advertising writing its own obituary?
We’ve become obsessed with media strategy at the expense of creative strategy.
By far, the most heavily debated issues in the ad world these days are around media strategy — traditional vs digital; precision targeting vs mass reach; programmatic vs direct, etc. There is far less impassioned discussion over creative strategy.
According to ANA and PwC, 70% of advertising dollars spent on online programmatic advertising never touch a human being. Of the US$ 550 billion expected in annual programmatic ad spend in 2023, over 70% will i.e over US$ 380 billion will disappear in ” ad fees, ad fraud, non-viewable impressions, non brand-safe ad placements, and unknown allocations.
By unknown allocations, you can read ” shit that no one can figure out “.
Brands are funding an opaque eco system. advertisers are being screwed blind by ad tech ferrets. More than 800 million devices now have ad blocking. Truckloads are being spent on advertising
that is neither seen nor impacting.
And, worst, it’s actually alienating people that it is supposed to impact. The really important issue is the impact of tracking (the basis of all programmatic activity) on society and the enormous damage it is doing to individuals and to democratic institutions.
Equally important is the quality of the creatives that are putting off people.

Technology and Wisdom: In marketing, the twain can’t seem to meet!

Technology and Wisdom: In marketing, the twain can’t seem to meet!

To say that we are at the very forefront of cutting edge technology would be an understatement. Considering all the spectacular advances we see today in space travel, driverless cars, artificial intelligence, IOT, robotics, digital health, augmented reality, laser guided missiles etc, technology surely has motored along at more than a furious clip. Technology is ubiquitous, omni present, in the face and as they say, ‘ always on ‘.

Wisdom on the other hand is very much under the radar not because it cannot be droned up into the spotlight but there seems to be a tangible scarcity of it around. Most definitely in marketing.

In marketingtechnology and wisdom are at two opposite ends of the spectrum. And, unlike magnetic forces, these opposites don’t attract. On the contrary, they repel. Technology is always moving in linear progression. Wisdom, on the other hand, with all the associated ammunition of insights, experience, maturity, just does not. Cannot.

Not all technology is the domain of the young and not all wisdom comes with age. But, as a general rule, tech is the territory of youth, wisdom the territory of maturity. Though there is strong perception that technology equates wisdom, nothing that we see today in the world of marketing or advertising at least backs the argument even remotely. We are in an era of ‘ technology overload ‘ that causes ad frauds(US$16 Billion), intrusion of customer privacy, manipulation of public opinion, colossal wastage etc etc. And there is no wisdom in that.

We seem to have moved on from what the very wise advertising greats of the past including William Bernbach, Howard Gossage etc preached and practiced. With a great degree of success. Without any technology at their disposal.

Technology digs into collective bias. What is called for is a balance of technology with the scaffolding of wisdom, without which, sauce for the goose is not exactly sauce for the gander!

As T.S Eliot said ‘ Where is the wisdom we have lost in all the knowledge? Where is the knowledge that we have lost in all the information? And where is the life that we have lost in living? ”


Image: ISD Global