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Are customers responding to predicted trends this year, and how is the industry measuring up to initial year-end predictions? Self-service programmatic ad provider Choozle recently conducted a survey of 502 consumers in the US (53 percent female and 47 percent male). It wanted to assess consumer experience with predicted trends across ad platforms, customer behavior, and personal data.
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The results revealed that consumer sentiment has shifted, and now opposes many of these predicted trends -- including the rise of video, voice, and ad blockers.
The survey found that 43 percent of respondents felt negatively toward online advertisements, an increase of 9 percent compared to a similar survey conducted in April 2017.
The survey also showed that many consumers are unaware of how these developments affect them.
Social platforms continue to be influential across consumers: Facebook with 54 percent and Google at 44 percent remain the most influential platforms for advertising to consumers. This is followed by Instagram at 23 percent, Spotify (28 percent), and Pandora (24 percent).
Despite increased ad budgets spent on Instagram, the platform lags behind -- but amongst the 18 to 29 age group; 60 percent said they were influenced by ads on Instagram.
Although mobile has continually been predicted as the leading digital advertising channel in 2018, only 45 percent of respondents said they were more likely click on an ad on their mobile device. Another 41 percent said they are more likely to click on a desktop.
Video is a major predicted trend in 2018. However, almost three-quarters (72 percent) of consumers do not prefer video ads over other types of online advertisements.
The survey revealed that one in three (38 percent) of 30- to 44-year-old respondents prefer videos compared to any other age group.
Although reports indicate a growing opportunity for voice search advertising, the survey showed that only 7 percent of respondents said they were influenced by ads served through Google Home or Amazon's Alexa (6 percent).
Connected TV advertising also does not match consumer sentiment. Only 17 percent of consumers said they are influenced by ads on internet-connected TV, increasing to 29 percent across the 18 to 29 age group.
Internet users are becoming more and more aware of how-and where-their data is being used.
When respondents were asked their level of understanding around personal data use, respondents answered that they are not very knowledgeable (26 percent) or not at all knowledgeable (18 percent) about what personal data online companies have about them.
Almost two-thirds (63 percent) of respondents understand that some companies do sell their personal data to other companies to make money, and 89 percent do not think companies are doing enough to protect their data.
The introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) has been a major news topic over the past year. However ,60 percent of consumers did not know what the regulations meant or how they could be affected.
However, three-quarters (78 percent) of respondents think the US government should adopt stricter privacy and security standards, and 44 percent think that the websites that are showing the ads should be responsible for eliminating ads with false information.
Yet again, consumers have demonstrated that forecasts and industry pundits get their predictions wrong. Brands would do well to adjust their strategies and watch their consumers changing behaviors in order to keep in the game.
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