Consumers choose targeting, find little of relevance

Fifty-seven per cent of consumers would prefer online ads to be targeted, rather than delivered in a blanket approach, if it meant there were fewer ads overall.

But only 25% find targeted ads are relevant to them in any way, according to research carried out by YouGov on behalf of technology and media company Collective.

The survey found that overall, 60% of UK consumers find online advertising is neither relevant nor targeted, suggesting a significant waste of investment by marketers in this channel. “These findings show that consumers are receptive to receiving targeted messages, but also show that the current approach is failing to connect brands with their audience,” said Steven Filler, UK managing director at Collective.

Trust emerged as an important dimension in relevancy. Twenty-one per cent of consumers would not trust an ad placed on a site they had never previously visited, even if it was targeted. Trust in an ad would not be influenced either way among 17% of consumers if the site was serving something relevant to them.

Filler added: “We currently see two extremes being used to target consumers; re-marketing to users who have visited the client’s site, often at high frequency; or generic brand messaging target to sites rather than audiences. If brands are to make a strong connection with consumers, they will need to use genuine audience insight to target the right user with rich, tailored ad formats in good quality environments.”

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