Unraveling Digital Ad Mysteries with Sonobi on Ad-Blocking and Unified on Social Media Metrics

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Justin Kennedy, COO at Sonobi
As Chief Operating Officer of Sonobi, Justin is focused on developing and executing the strategic vision of the company, bringing the ideas and innovations of the executive team to reality. With over 10 years of operational management experience, Justin identifies and develops key partnerships and manages the professional development and growth of Sonobi employees.

Q: How can advertisers ensure they’re adhering to the stricter ad-blocking rules that groups like the Coalition for Better Ads are putting in place?

A: Since Chrome has initiated their ad-blocker functions, the easiest way is to go into the webmaster tools within Google. If you have verified sites in there, you can utilize the tool to make sure your site is compliant. This practice could be replicated in case any additional browsers or platforms take a similar stance on ad-blocking as Google has done.

Q: With Google Chrome being the first platform to implement stricter ad-blocking rules, why do you think they decided to take this initiative on?

A: Google wants to be seen as someone that is trying to make the ecosystem better for the user. The happy the users are, the more likely they are to continue visiting a website. This helps create a sustainable business for publishers, and ultimately, for Google.

That said, the ads that will ultimately be blocked are ones that have been widely known to publishers as detrimental to the user experience. Despite having this knowledge on hand, they’ve continued to utilize them.

 I think this is a play by Google to continue to consolidate the digital media experience to their benefit. It’s telling that there are ad types supported by Google that somehow have been absolved as being labeled as a “bad ad.”

Q: How do you think this will impact digital advertising in the future?

A: This could actually cause digital media to become a bit more transparent and accurate.  It’s not a stretch to think that some of these ads were being used to falsely represent inventory or efficacy (think IBV in a 300×250 being sold as “video”).

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Jason Beckerman, CEO and Co-Founder at Unified:

Jason’s 15 years of enterprise software experience spans the marketing, SaaS, and financial services industries. As CEO, Jason oversees Unified’s product, technology, operations, and organizational strategy. His team has managed hundreds of millions of dollars of social marketing investments for the world’s largest brands. Working with brands, publishers, and partners in the marketing community, Jason implements organization-changing technology solutions that deliver clear business results.

Q: Social platforms like Facebook and YouTube are continuing to make changes to their metrics reporting in effort to calm advertiser uneasiness when it comes to transparency and measurement. Just how important is this?

A: It is incredibly important for social platforms to do this, because it builds the trust with advertisers needed to scale and grow those relationships. The real concern is that they are making changes at such a high rate that many advertising partners cannot keep up or provide clean data and transparency to brands.

Q: Is this enough? Do they need to do more? 

A: Social platforms are evolving faster than programmatic display did, making it critical for them to keep transparency in mind as they scale in measurement and complexity.  While everyone can always get better and focus on continuous improvement, this is certainly a great step in the right direction.

Q: Why is it vital for marketers to demand more transparency from social media advertising platforms?

A: With budgets getting bigger, marketers can expect more oversight from CEOs and CFOs. As a result, advertisers must stop treating social as a cool new toy and more like an investment.

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