A More Elegant Question About Ad Blocking

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Ad blocking is a huge problem.

And, if you don’t think ad blocking is a huge problem, consider that it will be an increasingly more complex problem, if the manufacturers of both devices and operating systems (especially for mobile) decide to initiate programs where the option to block ads is a core component of the ecosystem (which, is exactly what is happening). It changes the economics of advertising, especially as publishers and advertisers struggle to make their message connect with an audience in an increasingly fragmented and distributed media landscape.

Did you know that ad content accounts for between 18% and 79% mobile data usage?

How do you think consumers will feel about this piece of data? It’s strange how nobody is really banging the drum on this data point (then again, why would any publisher want to publicize this?). Please read this piece from Business InsiderAds on news sites gobble up as much as 79% of users’ mobile data. Ask consumers about how frustrated they are with mobile usage fees, how often they go over on their data plans, and more. It’s not pretty. Maybe brands are asking the wrong question? We’re stuck in this debate about how to get our messages across as ad blocking becomes more and more commonplace, but spending little time really thinking about the consumers’ wants and needs. Bloating their user experience to show them an ad – that’s already annoying them – does not feel like the best way to engender their attention or loyalty.

Question: is ad blocking a problem for brands?


A more elegant question: what role should brands play in helping consumers to have a better mobile experience, not a more bloated, expensive and slower one?