Overcoming adblockers, the mobile future and what's coming up at The Drum: Editor's overview

By Stephen Lepitak | -

February 27, 2017 | 6 min read

Happy post-Oscars day, which means we're nearly into March and 2017 is already racing away with itself. Here's a bit of a look at some thoughts on recent news and what's to come from us over the coming days here at The Drum.

Have we overcome adblockers? Probably not just yet

You may or may not have caught last week's report on ad blocking usage from the IAB that claims their use is stablising at 22%. The theory is that users are starting to understand how the value exchange works and that they cannot expect to consume media entirely for free. Since the fear generated around the cost to publishers as readers started to switch on ad blockers to avoid being bombarded by digital ads they didn't want, it would seem the industry has effectively conveyed the importance of its ads to more than three quarters of the UK.

Stephen Lepitak

Stephen Lepitak

I have never turned on an ad blocker in my life, but I do know that in the last year the intrusiveness of digital ads I have received has risen as far as I have noticed – and while the industry is aware of the need to improve its targeting methods, I'm unconvinced from personal experience that this is happening quickly enough.

So while this research does indicate that publishers are doing some things right, we also examined Dennis Publishing's plan to overcome them on The Week. In Dennis' study, five in 10 users were convinced to view its digital ads through 'a nuanced approach' and allowing users to adjust the messaging based on their own preferences seems to be an effective approach when it comes to serving loyal readers and driving click throughs. When it comes to news delivery, I don't think personalisation is the best way to go, but when it comes to ad serving, surely this is a must for every publisher effectively serving their advertisers?

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We'll quickly see if the launch of Rainbow's (formerly Shine Technology) 'better, cleaner' online ad experience as promised helps make a real difference in this continuing battle.

The mobile future

Delegates from all around the world have converged in Barcelona once again to hear and see what the future holds for mobile. Expect to hear more about opportunities in VR and 5G over the next couple of days during Mobile World Congress.

Despite the conference being all about looking to the future, Nokia has dominated the early headlines by announcing the relaunch of the 3310, a handset that was popular almost two decades ago. It's been a clever stunt to get the long ailing brand attention – however its future is certainly not based around this relaunch which is clearly just a marketing stunt. Although the return of the mobile game Snake is welcome.

You can read a few of the previews we've run online here from marketers at brands such as MasterCard and Telefonica and on what the event holds for advertisers.

Advertising Week Europe – what we're doing for it

At Advertising Week Europe over the last two years we have run a double decker bus around London while running a few panels, interviews and even a couple of parties along the way. Later this week we'll be announcing what we plan to do during Advertising Week Europe this year which we hope will be fun, different and of interest to the industry to join us. Keep your eyes on the website to see what we have planned and how you can get involved – I think it'll be a good week again this year!

Elsewhere at The Drum

If you didn't catch our announcement to make the magazine a global publication, then you can find the details of the plan in the news piece.

The deadline to enter The Drum Search Awards falls on 3 March, while we're allowing a small extension for last minute entries to the Drum Marketing, Online Media and Digital Trading Awards to take place as well. Find out more details about each online here.

And thanks to everyone who came along to our monthly coffee morning in the London office where everyone seemed to have a good time. It's always great to meet our readers and hear their ideas and thoughts too. More details of when those take place are available and regularly updated online at The Drum Diary.


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