Does online advertising really work? I’m not so sure. As a digital native, I have been using technology practically my whole life, and online advertising has always been a part of it. However, there are very few times when I have actually clicked on a flashing click me ad, a pop-up or a side advertisement. Actually in truth, I am less apt to click an ad that is sponsored because I try and avoid big businesses. When I click on a YouTube video and I am forced to watch an Esurance commercial, I immediately walk away or open a different window… especially since I’m an Esurance customer! And, I wonder how many people feel like I do?
I know corporations are always looking for a way to sell their products and services. However, I wonder if pushing their products on us does them more harm than good? People immersed in digital culture do not want to be bothered with online advertisements. They want the freedom to navigate the web or social media without having to deal with a barrage of advertisements.
However, I think there is a method of social media advertising that companies miss. I am significantly more likely to click on an ad or like a page or look up a site if one of my FB or Twitter friends posts the link. Companies should be paying patrons to promote their sites, products or services with their friends. Companies could and should be paying consumers to endorse their products. I believe that is the only way online advertising can hope to be successful.