Bloomberg: We have the opportunity to innovate in mobile advertising before people start blocking it

As the ad blocking debate becomes ever more heated, the industry has an opportunity to be more innovative with mobile ads to avoid generating the same malaise that is spreading across desktop, according to Bloomberg Media.

The call came from Bloomberg Media’s senior editor EMEA Nate Lanxon, who urged the industry to address the issue of ad blocking before it gains popularity on mobile.

“We are at a turning point in the industry with ad blocking on mobile. It is not as prevalent but we see more and more happening in the mobile space,” he told an audience at the IAB Digital Upfronts. “Device companies like Apple are allowing, for the first time, native blocking of ads – I don’t know if that would have happened if the ads had been really good on mobile in the first place.

“We have the opportunity to innovate before people want to start blocking it, and if we don’t do that now, as an industry, we will lose people on mobile in same way that some parts of the industry have been lost on desktop.”

The advice comes as Bloomberg Media rolls out a suite of new ad tech tools to provide commercial partners in EMEA with a technology suite to reach high-value audiences with the right content. These will enhance the commercial offering from the company for advertisers seeking to access an audience of affluent business leaders across the region.

These tools include B:Match, a proprietary data and analytics tool that helps to inform audience segmentation and consumer behaviour; Social Connect 2.0, a targeted approach to reaching a socially engaged audience; and Trendr, an algorithm-driven tool that allows advertisers to associate with the most relevant and newsworthy topics, people and companies.

Over the past year Bloomberg Media has doubled its customer content revenue, seeing more success from advertisers who are trying to tell interesting stories on its platform rather than traditional ad formats.

Speaking in conversation with The Drum on stage, Bloomberg Media managing director Adam Freeman welcomed the debate around ad blocking and said the industry had been silent on the topic for too long.

“We have to be honest with ourselves: if you work in the advertising industry, there is something wrong if we are creating products that consumers are actively deciding to turn off,” he said. “Nobody actually embraces advertising, but now with digital media we have to understand that audiences have more control than ever before and ad blocking is a phenomenon that is not going away.

“If we create compelling stories for brands that add value to audience’s experiences, I think there is a really powerfully mutual relationship between the two. Well done City AM – it’s a brave move and it’s good to hear the industry talking about it, because it’s been silent for too long.”

Seperately, Bloomberg Media today (21 October) announced a reshuffle of its commercial team with Emma Winchurch-Beale promoted to client lead, EMEA advertising sales and the appointment of Rightster's Samantha Thomson-Hutchins who takes up the role of luxury sales group head, EMEA.

In addition Sarah Green has joined as head of luxury sales, Switzerland and France. Green joins from BBC Worldwide where she held the position of account director, Switzerland, for BBC Advertising since 2011.

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