Personalized ads have become a regular part of our lives at this point. You have a conversation with a friend about cat food... 15 minutes later you see an ad for cat food on Facebook.
Personalized advertising is when advertisers use the information and data they know about you to predict what advertisements you would most likely click on. In theory this sounds like a great idea, but when you dive into the shady practices that are used to extract this data from individuals, it takes a dark turn.
There are tons of arguments against the use of personalized advertising, from privacy concerns, to questions about its effectiveness and the public perception of personalized advertising. Here are 5 cold hard facts that argue against the use of personalized ads.
5,000 Data Points
The average number of data points Facebook has on each user. They collect these data points by tracking your every move online and offline. They track your physical locations, they know every website you've been to and they know everything you've purchased. Is the "benefit" of personalized ads really worth individuals having to surrender their privacy?
83% don't like ads following them around online
Over 80% of consumers do not like brands and ads that follow them around online! This means consumers don't like seeing an ad for brand A on Facebook, then going to Google and seeing the same ad for Brand A. If consumers don't like the way a company is advertising, what makes you think they'll spend money with that company?
1/3 of all digital ad dollars are wasted
33% of the average companies digital advertising budget is wasted due to ad fraud. This is due to fake profiles seeing and clicking on their advertisements. Fake Clicks=Money for Facebook/Google. Fake Clicks=Money wasted for advertisers.
68% of consumers disapprove of websites tracking their online activity for personalized ads
Almost 7 out of every 10 Americans disapprove of websites tracking them online to serve them more personalized ads. Every paid advertisement through the major social networks uses this type of targeting for their ads. Again this goes back to if consumers don't approve of a way of advertising, why do companies continue to do it?
3/4 of consumers find personalized ads creepy
I don't think any companies wants to come off as creepy, but that is exactly what personalized ads due to consumers. 75% of consumers reported all types of personalized ads being "somewhat creepy". Being a creepy company is not a good way to build a relationship with consumers and turn them into customers.
These are just a few stats against the use of personalized ads. We all have our stories about ads being creepy and feeling like companies are spying on us. This shouldn't be the case, privacy is more important than serving consumers hyper personalized advertisements.
DuckDuckGo is a great alternative to google ads. DuckDuckGo keeps it simple in serving ads, if someone searches for a baseball glove, they show them ads for baseball gloves.
REACHur is an alternative to social media advertising. We have real people post ads on their stories for businesses.