Online ads not always a hit with consumers

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Washington, June 15 (ANI): When it comes to advertising on Internet, eye-catching pop-up graphics and videos on related websites might not really clock with privacy-concerned consumers, according to a study.

The first large-scale study looking at thousands of online ad campaigns says that in combination, these approaches make viewers feel like their privacy is being invaded - and turns them off.

"Usually more is better. If targeting works and visible ads work, you'd think visible, targeted ads would work even better - but they didn't," said Avi Goldfarb, an associate professor of marketing at the Rotman School of Management, who conducted the study with Catherine Tucker of MIT's Sloan School of Business.

The study used data from nearly 3,000 web-advertising campaigns across a wide variety of product categories.

It found that high-visibility ads were associated with better consumer recall, while content-linked ads led to higher consumer purchase plans.

But although consumers still had good recall when the strategies were used together, their purchase intentions were worse than if the ad had not been particularly visible at all.

The effect was strongest in more private product categories - such as financial products - and among consumers who declined to offer information about their incomes when asked in an online survey.

The results may explain the unexpected success of Google AdSense, says the study, which uses unobtrusive text-based ads that are tied to a webpage's content.

"Our results show privacy matters in something of a subtle way in online advertising. Sometimes privacy violations are fine, sometimes they're not," said Goldfarb.

The study will be published in a forthcoming issue of Marketing Science. (ANI)

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