Navigating Today’s Brand-Threatening Digital Ad Environment
Today’s digital environment can seem like a minefield – websites that veer from political commentary to violent bombast, videos that seem innocent but turn out illicit, blog posts that go in a click from curious to creepy. How can a digital advertiser be sure his message only appears in an appropriate, safe environment? Simple. Ask the SKAR media department to handle it.
Brand safety is a priority for our clients, and that’s why we take precautions to ensure that our client’s brand and ad message don’t appear on or next to any unsavory content.
SKAR’s media department works to make sure the ads are placed in appropriate, brand-safe environments. We develop one-to-one relationships with publishers or trusted partners who know exactly where the ad will be served and only work with vendors that are able to give us site lists.
SKAR uses verification parties like Moat, DoubleVerify and Integral Ad Science, and typically receives reports on a monthly or biweekly basis to ensure there are no surprises.
SKAR blacklists certain websites – which means our client’s ads are not served on those sites. As an example, we blacklisted gaming sites for a client because some games are intensely violent, and that environment didn’t suit the serious, sober nature of the client’s services.
On the other hand, SKAR also whitelists certain websites – so our client’s ads do appear on those sites. An example would be Nebraska-themed sites for a client strongly associated with the Cornhusker state. There can be exclusive whitelists (an ad would run only on certain sites) or inclusive whitelists (a certain site would be added to the list).
One key to good placement is getting to know and building relationships with reputable companies that invest in software and technology to keep our clients in a safe environment.
Keywords are often used to target audiences based on interests. For example, the keyword “ball” might be used to target an audience interested in sports. But we have to be careful: Adding an “s” to the keyword could put ads on a different – and inappropriate – kind of website.
Relationships between SKAR’s media department and publishers and vendors are extremely important.
For example, website publishers who served the ads of a local hospital client alerted us to an upcoming negative news report about the client. We made the decision to pause the ad until the item was no longer news.
Drawing on the analytics of visitors at thousands of websites, we can serve ads targeted directly to consumers who are most interested in certain products and services. It’s important to use this capability responsibly.
We don’t want to be too limiting. We want to meet people where they are – as long as they’re in a safe place for our client’s brand.
Interested in learning more? Contact SKAR today.