Where you place your digital ad really matters to consumers

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With the rapid growth of programmatic advertising in recent years, concerns have arisen about whether digital ad impressions are becoming increasingly commoditized.

However, ads on premium sites seem to enjoy an advantage in the digital space, as online consumers look them upon as trustworthy.


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This is the finding of a survey commissioned by Buzzeff Middle East Africa.

Premium websites are websites that produce good quality and high-value content to online consumers. Being a premium website also follows that it has an established and strong reputation, which consumers look for and instantly visit to know more information about a certain topic, product or service.

The survey reveals that over two-thirds of GCC respondents (59%) are more likely to trust a brand that they see advertised on a premium website (a reputable website that features professional quality content), with 52% claiming that they are more likely to purchase a product when seen on such platforms.

The UAE advertising market reached AED 6.7 billion in 2017, accounting for 48% of total advertising expenditure across the Gulf region.

The survey identified similar trends in relation to premium websites in the UAE, with 64% of Emirati respondents stating that they are more likely to trust a brand advertised on a premium website. The same is true for Asian (62%), Arab expat (64%) and western (57%) respondents.


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“These results confirm what we always believed at Buzzeff that getting the audience attention is not enough, the environment in which you reach your audience (Premium and clean Vs Social and cluttered) is equally important,” comments Jerome Mouthon, Founder and Chairman of Buzzeff MEA.

“Brands in the MENA region are becoming more aware of this reality especially with the critical brand safety issues faced by the industry since 2017. Digital advertising can put the brand equity at stake, marketers should be vigilant and require from their partners premium, viewable and safe advertising,” he adds.

Brought by the need for better control and an improved system against inappropriate content and poor advertisement placements, brand safety is increasingly becoming an important component in digital advertising. Global and regional brands are more strategic in placing advertisements with the aim of maintaining customer loyalty and capturing the attention of new consumers.

65% of UAE-based survey respondents highlighted that they are more likely to watch advertisements that do not interfere with their online experience, and 76% claimed that they are more likely to watch an advertisement that is relevant to the content or article that they are reading online.


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“The results highlight the importance of user-friendly advertising and contextual advertising relevancy. A type of advertising that has been known for its user-friendly formats is viewable outstream advertising. It consists of advertisements appearing within the heart of the editorial content, and only playing when in view of the user. This way, brands know that they are not only reaching their target audience in a seamless way, but their content is being organically viewed by an engaged audience,” adds Mouthon.

The survey was conducted by YouGov in February and March 2018, with over 2,700 participants from across the GCC.