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Unless you’ve been under a proverbial rock recently, you know the marketing world is abuzz about ad-blocking.
Apple kicked off the storm with an announcement that Safari on iOS 9 features an ad-blocker for iPhone and iPad. Cue mayhem. Some say the consumer is bound to be at the epicenter of a monstrous power struggle between tech juggernauts. Ad-blockers have been near the top of the App store charts. One of the most popular apps was pulled from the App Store by its creator after he had a change of heart.
All the chatter reinforces a theme we’re seeing emerge in the marketing world, one we’ve been thinking over recently. Connecting with our audience isn’t about grabbing screen space and forcing consumers to see our content. It’s about working hard to create quality content that earns their attention. This is what we all want, and we’re reinforcing it with our actions. We’re fed up with intrusive ads and the terrible user experience they create. Seth Godin says it beautifully: “The best way to contact your users is by earning the privilege to contact them, over time.”
Let’s Sum It Up
There’s no need to be Woody from Toy Story- this is not “the perfect time to panic!” It’s just another stanza of a persistent wake-up call, and the chorus is getting louder and louder. Though it will undoubtedly put a dent in the online advertising business, I believe the ad-blocking revolution can be a blessing to marketers. Our goal is content worth reading, and you don’t have to force anyone to read that. It’s up to us to earn our audience’s attention, and in the end, that’s better for us all.