Covid-19 Poses Threat to Digital Media, How the Threat Can Be Contained

Covid-19 Poses Threat to Digital Media, How the Threat Can Be Contained

Covid-19 is posing an unprecedented threat to digital media, despite the fact that consumers are reading more online news than ever. Advertisers utilising strict keyword blocking and adding broad broad coronavirus terms to their blacklists are missing out on the current traffic spike, and are also slashing vital revenue for publishers.

There has been legitimate concerns about the long-term effects. Following projections of 50 million pound sterling in publisher losses, multiple industry bodies have launched pleas to preserve digital media sustainability. The IAB, for instance, is asking advertisers to expunge coronavirus-related terms from banned keywords.

The limitations of keywords are not a new problem. While initially hailed as a streamlined way of avoiding inappropriate ad placements at speed and scale, the drawbacks of broad blocking practices have become increasingly clear. Before the Covid-19 outbreak, digital news about hit shows such as Games of Thrones saw a significant drop in advertising due to inclusion of terms featured on wide-ranging blacklists, such as “violence” and “murder.”

There is the need for semantic shift. The main advantage of such a semantic shift for advertisers is obvious. With efficient page-by-page analysis, positive association with content can bolster their reputation while avoiding genuinely unsafe ad space. But there is also the marked difference more nuanced assessment could make for publishers and news sites in the form of safeguarding ad revenues. Not to mention, the bonus of not relying on third-party cookies will come in handy as Google’s block comes into force and online privacy regulations continue to rise.

Culled from: MarketingTech

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