- eMarketer’s “Native Advertising in Western Europe: Paid Content Placements Gain Fans Throughout the Region” report found that Western Europe marketers are expected to rapidly increase spending on native advertising through 2020 in an effort to combat the adoption of ad blocking technology.
- Consumers in the region have expressed disapproval over more traditional digital ad formats, such as banner ads, pop-ups and autoplay video ads.
- Research by Enders Analysis found that native ad spending in the region rose by one-third in 2015 and is expected to rise 28.8% this year.
Even though consumers are not as averse to native ads and sponsored content, the ad blocking genie maybe too far out of the bottle at this point. Adoption rates continue to rise worldwide, and while adoption on mobile devices trails desktop, it is trending upwards as well. More troubling for the industry, ad block adoption is most prevalent among the youngest users, meaning there is an entire generation growing up with the expectation that they can avoid ads.
A recent study by the IAB UK found that one way to combat ad block adoption is through transparency and by giving the user control over the advertising experience. For marketers, one advantage of native ads over traditional digital formats is that native ads tend to not get caught by ad block software because of how they are served to users. But while native ads may be more effective that other formats, that doesn't mean they can cure ad blocking.
“Native advertising is one way to counter ad blocking, but it doesn’t resolve the problem," Maylis Chevalier, country manager for Spain at native and performance firm Ligatus, a Cologne-based subsidiary of publisher Gruner+Jahr, told eMarketer. "That requires a common effort from the entire industry—advertisers, networks, publishers and agencies—to offer consumers advertising which doesn’t intrude on their experience or indeed enriches it, so they have no reason to use an ad blocker.”