Any move that Apple makes is certain to cause ripples across the interconnected tech world, and the company’s moves to block mobile ads is certainly going to have some serious fallout for advertisers.
With the arrival of iOS 9, ad blockers will be allowed to be easily inserted into Safari with the aim of giving a smoother user experience for internet browsing.
The move comes at a time when online advertising is increasingly being focused on mobile devices as more and more people choose their phone as their preferred way of going online.
The recent changes in the way that Instagram has opened up a more ad-friendly approach and even the mobile-based changes to Google rankings criteria are all pointers to the importance of smartphones to any online campaign planning.
Taken all together, the new moves by Apple mean that the current approach to mobile ads will be certain to undergo some drastic changes.
In a recent article, Tom Goodwin, senior VP-strategy and innovation at Havas Media, claims that “the current mobile experience isn’t working for anyone.
“Publishers and media owners still receive fractions of the revenue that the same ads once made in print. More eyeballs and more time spent consuming media merely creates extra inventory to keep costs low. Unlike TV or print, the more users search, click and flick, the more ad space is created, and it’s unlimited. Mobile monetisation has improved, but it still brings in money at lower rates that anywhere else we’ve seen.”
There is no doubt that advances in ad-blocking technology mean that advertisers themselves must start using new ways to think about mobile-friendly campaigns.
Under the radar
What Goodwin calls “insidious advertising” is already pointing the way for many. Native ads, advertorials and branded content are all formats that have been buzzwords for quite some time for anyone involved in website copywriting or content production.
Ads that don’t look like ads can’t fall foul of ad-blocking software, at least not yet, so an increased application of this approach is an almost certain outcome of Apple’s latest move.
Sponsored content and product placement already plays a major role in online video ad campaigns, but there is bound to be an increase in editorial partnerships too.