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          Source: Economist    2021-05-12  我要投稿   論壇   Favorite  

          The inability to share data is forcing advertisers to come up with new ruses. One is to bypass rules banning data transfers between ad-tech companies by consolidating. In February AppLovin, a mobile-software firm, acquired Adjust, which provides mobile-ad attribution, reportedly for $1bn. Another is to ask users to “sign in”, which lets an app monitor their behaviour with no need for IDFAS. And instead of targeting individuals, marketers can target broader interest groups—coffee lovers, Daily Mail readers, and so on—much as they did in the pre-internet age. It’s “back to the future”, says Mr Wieser. 


          Stripped of accurate ways of measuring their impact, “direct-response ads” that require consumers to take an action (like clicking) lose their appeal. Advertisers will again have to gauge ads’ effectiveness by looking for a rise in sales in a region where an ad ran but not elsewhere. Because campaigns that promote general awareness of a brand never benefited as much from tracking, platforms which mostly attract brand advertising will not feel much difference. Snap, whose social network, popular with teenagers, belongs to that group, posted a year-on-year rise in revenues of 66% in the first quarter. 


          The less advertisers know about their audience, the costlier advertising will become. Facebook has argued this will hurt small businesses. It is probably right, thinks William Merchan of Pathmatics, a data company. Digital ads promise to cut waste in media buys, he says. Now that advertisers are again in the dark about which half of their budget is wasted, they are “going to have to just spend more”. 


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