Op-Ed:… And the price of lousy and unproductive online advertising goes to… Everyone

Social media operators face a conundrum regarding content labeled satirical, which can also be damaging disinformation. – © AFP

Online advertising has now reached a point of utter mediocrity that no one expected. With all this data and information, you get unnecessary advertising. Very rarely do you see anything of the least use to you, let alone something you could actually buy.


A little clarification may be needed here. There is a reason for this effervescent little escapade into advertising madness and whining ineptitude. I was literally born in an advertising agency. I have been advertising various types of online advertising for decades. I suspend my disbelief in how people win the lottery – rarely, if ever.

I learned the whys of advertising before I went to elementary school. It seems most people only learn the how. There is a very big difference. It’s business, bozos, hence this article.

Some subtle examples

Online advertising generates some truly amazing metrics, at least according to her. A basic search for the phrase online advertising will generate many positive results. Anyone, it seems, will make you an instant billionaire overnight. The news of online advertising says otherwise, every day of the week.

The irony here is that while some of the headlines in online advertising are about invasion of privacy, most actual ads are so often targeted that it’s pretty obvious they aren’t. . Personalized advertising is almost a contradiction in terms in some ways. It’s intrusive, it’s often misused and it’s a problem; but “effective advertising” is not and never will be.

Of course, fact and theory are the exact opposites. The most useful practical thing in online advertising is SEO, which if done right will actually help your search results. From there, it’s mythology.

Tracking users online is a lot like keeping cats. (A little hint – People are interested in different things at different times. Isn’t that amazing? Now it’s for your cupcakes and milk, what’s the currency level and how long is it all for? search online?)

Whatever information ends up oozing all massively overrated tracking and analysis, most of it obviously isn’t useful or used. For example, I worked for a John Deere service company, and people tried to sell me tractors for months after that. Including for some reason while reading The New York Times. So I advertise this business online, and the follow-up decides I wanted to buy a tractor. A complete reversal of the facts.

Then there is the complete lack of focus on properly targeted advertising in the market. It’s universal, and it’s done in the worst possible way, apparently for no reason. News sites in particular have a very bad habit of adding annoying ads to the margins of pages, or even right in the middle of the text. Totally unnecessary, distracting, irritating and a very negative user experience.

In my experience, there is indeed a 100% certainty that any advertisement placed on a website will be totally irrelevant. Sometimes, accidentally, you can see something interesting several times a year. Don’t bet on it.

Choosing to advertise for specific websites, especially videos, is hilarious to the point of requiring medication. I was watching a death metal band on YouTube for the chance to get an advertisement for health insurance. I was just watching a fight gameplay video this morning only to be interrupted by one of those male grooming commercials that desperately need a shot.

The use of web page space is arguably much worse. Someone needs to teach some irritating online ad placement.

Consider this delicious user experience:

A very interesting scientific news page caught your attention. Lucky you. What follows is quite revealing of the deplorable state of online advertising.

  1. The page loads, then freezes, then continues to add moving images. Your peripheral vision is constantly irritated.
  2. Anything that has nothing to do with your interest will then be loaded into the page margins.
  3. If you are lucky, the touching irritation will be replaced by another touching irritation.

Chances of selling anything to anyone this way, zero. People pay a fortune for this garbage, which has no hope of selling anything to anyone.

The very good news for advertisers

If you are an advertiser, you are by definition a masochist. Apparently, no one is checking these unsightly and overpriced total failures. You could be paying dollars per click for this total garbage. The good news is, no one will bother to click on your ads. The bad news is, you went through all of this online bureaucracy for absolutely nothing.

For the simplest of minds:

  1. Advertising campaigns can be audited with precision. The sales figures, for whatever reason, are accurate and can be directly linked to any type of online advertising. There is also a rumor that the wheel will one day be invented.
  2. Metrics can be correctly analyzed, not just turned into excuses.
  3. Anyone involved in UX could tell you what happens when you pause online videos.
  4. Any freshman marketing student could tell you the likely outcome if you put your ads in the wrong places.
  5. A house brick could tell you more about the advertisement than the spruikers can ever tell you.


What’s the point in spending all that time, money, and effort creating and placing totally unnecessary information? Why this desperate attempt to get people to absolutely hate the advertised products?

I regularly make a wish never purchase any advertised product that interferes with my user experience. I don’t appreciate my time and money being wasted on such totally unnecessary bullshit, and I can do something about it. The same goes for all other consumers on the planet.

Is the obvious total lack of talent in online advertising revealing? Like for example a worldwide collection of totally useless overpaid morons who couldn’t sell sex in a prison?

Is this really an expected level of performance from advertising and marketing executives? If yes, why? Do you like paying for absolutely nothing?

Why is this drivel tolerated by anyone? Advertising is expensive, time consuming, and your business depends on it. … So it should be done as little as possible?

If you want to sell, at least sell to the right people in the right way. At least pretend to think about the user experience. While you’re at it, remember that any ad online can be clicked to oblivion in under a second.

Meanwhile, the geniuses of advertising, gesundheit.

About Deborah Wilson

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