At the Dmexco advertising industry trade show currently underway in Cologne, Germany, a new coalition group was announced on Thursday to try to address the problem of bad advertising on the web. The new group is called the Coalition for Better Ads and includes a variety of companies and groups who are joining together to try to get in front of the rise of ad blocking technology. Not surprising, Google, which relies heavily on advertising, is helping lead the effort.
According to the Coalition, several initiatives are underway:
- creating a consumer-based, data-driven standard for the online advertising industry to improve the consumer ad experience;
- deploying technology, to be developed by IAB Tech Lab, to implement the standard;
- encouraging awareness of the standard among consumers and businesses in an effort to get the standard and related technologies adopted.
According to sources, the technology to implement the new standard will consist of code that scans and scores advertising, requiring a certain minimum score to be achieved in order for an ad to appear to consumers.
One of the problems advertisers, and those delivering the ads, are seeing is that consumer efforts to block ads can have a negative financial impact on a business’s financial model. Stephan Loerke, CEO for the World Federation of Advertisers, explains it:
“Ads support free content, quality journalism and enable social connections across the Internet. But people are telling us they are fed up with how ads are being delivered on their favourite sites. We hear that message loud and clear. Today’s announcement is an important step forward in shaping a worldwide response.”
Founding members of the Coalition include:
- American Association of Advertising Agencies (4A’s),
- Association of National Advertisers (ANA),
- BVDW Germany,
- Digital Content Next,
- European Publishers Council,
- IAB Europe,
- IAB Tech Lab,
- additional national and regional IABs,
- Network Advertising Initiative (NAI),
- News Media Alliance,
- Procter & Gamble,
- The Washington Post, and
- World Federation of Advertisers (WFA).
Google’s involvement with the Coalition goes back to at least 2015 when the company started to get vocal about the advertising industry implementing some self-regulatory measures in order to deal with rising consumer interest in ad blockers. Google went so far as to appoint Scott Spencer, who came to the company with their purchase of DoubleClick Ad Exchange, to lead an initiative pushing for “sustainable advertising.”
The first consumer facing piece is expected to appear in 2017 when the new IAB Tech Lab developed software starts to hit the market and impacts the ads that consumers see. Meanwhile, the Coalition is soliciting interest from organizations and businesses that want to join. Getting new members will be important as the Coalition says their efforts to deliver a better online advertising experience will be paid for by the membership.