Survey: Consumers Will Accept Ads in Exchange for Free Media Content


NEW YORK, June 4, 2014 (ADOTAS) – A new survey of consumer attitudes in online advertising and content carried out by New York and London-based cloud technology provider CloudSense underlines the continuing need for advertising to sustain the current business model of online publications and websites. Of the more than 2,000 US-based consumers surveyed, 59 percent currently do not pay to access any digital media sites. Yet 46 percent (the most popular reply) said that seeing advertising around content was their preferred way of ‘paying for’ access to content, while 24 percent are happy to view advertising before reaching content, underlining their acceptance of it in the delivery of media.

In the 16-24 year-old age group, the number prepared to accept advertising around content rose to 56 percent, with 24 percent happy with upfront advertising. This is a significant marker for the future as the survey detects that the younger generation is less inclined to spend money on online content, despite consuming more media platforms than older respondents. However, the figures for those accepting advertising decline gradually as respondents get older, suggesting that attitudes evolve with age and there is no dramatic generation gap.

Online advertising is accepted overall, with only a small number (nine percent) prepared to pay to have no ads. Paywall-protected newspapers will need to improve this figure to make their business model viable. Privacy was also seen as more important than relevancy with 46 percent not wanting advertisers to know more about them to enable more personalized ads.

Additionally, the survey, which collectively polled the views of 4,000 consumers across the UK and US, revealed some interesting contrasts between the two countries. For example, in the US, online is still the preferred way (78 percent) to access content such as news, fashion, sports and business, nine percent ahead of television, while in the UK the overall figures are exactly reversed with nine percent more preferring television than online options.

“We wanted to develop some tangible proof points around media consumption across two of our largest markets and to provide publishers and media houses with insight on how consumers view online advertising,” explained Richard Britton (pictured), CloudSense CEO.

“The traditional models of advertising are shifting at a greater pace than even a year ago. We’re living in multi-screen society where the youngest generation is both tech savvy and multi-connected. With so many sites out there, it’s not surprising these consumers are not used to paying for content,” said Rowley Douglas, Executive Vice President, CloudSense North America. “That said, this generation doesn’t mind seeing ads around the content they’re trying to access. This means publishers now have to modify their approach to attract – and justify – why advertisers should continue to invest in an audience that may or may not click into ads surrounding the content on the publisher’s sites. With the erosion of print spend the need to ensure a sustainable digital future is dependent on ad revenues.”

Continued Douglas: “Where publishers hold the advantage today is in their ability to offer true cross media advertising for brands. They have the heritage and content but the majority need to make a major step in how they sell and fulfil ads. Too much time and cost is due to separate teams for different platforms. With the increasing competition being easy to do business with and having a clear and complete view of customers is an important differentiator. There is a great opportunity but time is running out to make the change.”

About CloudSense

CloudSense is an award-winning global cloud technology company, providing platforms and services to enable multichannel sales and full lifecycle order management.

CloudSense is a Salesforce Platinum Partner offering the only solution that manages the entire customer journey from ecommerce and Configure, Price and Quote (CPQ) order capture through fulfillment to invoicing, accelerating the sales and delivery processes.  Sales and Service teams benefit from an optimized lead-to-cash activity, ensuring that complex orders are error-free, giving organisations more predictable sales and fulfillment pipelines and providing a single view of the customer across all channels.

Helping companies enter new digital markets as well as improve performance in existing markets, CloudSense puts an effective order process at the heart of customer operations. This enables companies to release products ahead of competitors, driving faster-time-to-market and managing the customer lifecycle.

The company has offices in London, Leeds, Zagreb and New York and lists organisations such as the BBC, O2 and the Financial Times among its customers. For more information, please visit


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