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Ad Blockers: Awesome or Awful?

Ad Blockers: Awesome or Awful?

I have to start this blog with a confession: I use ad blockers. Working in digital marketing means you’re online a lot. Adding an ad blocking extension to the web browser I use reduces web page size significantly – in some cases, by more than a third – which means pages load faster and I can get more work done. The same is true when I’m working from my smartphone: ad blockers enable a faster, more robust browsing experience. It’s much easier to read articles, enjoy social media and watch videos when ads aren’t interrupting every few seconds.

I’m hardly alone. Industry reports that more than half of all Millennials use some form of ad blocking software. Men are more likely to use ad blocking than women. The more tech-savvy you are, the more likely it is you’ve got ad blocking installed: Forbes recently reported that about 13% of their readers use ad blocking, while over at Ars Technica, the number approaches 40%.

Ad blockers are indeed awesome – but they clearly have a downside too. Online publishers, including the sites your customers go to for their favorite content, depend on advertising revenue to stay in business. And when I say depend, I mean that ads are 85% of their revenue stream. Attempts to switch to subscription based revenue models for digital publishing have largely failed; even papers like The New York Times report results have been anemic at best. Without ad revenue to support popular platforms, business owners will foreseeably see a future where there are far fewer places to advertise.

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Additionally, ad blockers mean that at least some of the energy and effort business owners put into digital advertising is being wasted. Ad blockers affect pay per click and display advertising, Google AdWords, Bing advertising, and more. Some ad blocking platforms offer business owners the chance to be whitelisted, which means you pay an additional premium for your ad to be allowed past the ad blocker’s protection.

The situation is evolving. Marketers are being forced into some painful self-examinations: if ads weren’t so obnoxious and intrusive, people wouldn’t go to such extensive lengths to block them. Ads that mirror a site’s feel and aesthetic garner more positive regard from the public than pop ups and auto-play video. Native advertising and organic search marketing will become increasingly important in an environment where the typical ad just can’t get through – something to think about as you plan your next marketing campaign!

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Creative Director/Senior Designer

Tom DiGrazia

With over a decade and a half of professional design experience, Tom brings his knowledge of design principles and focus on user experience to every aspect of his contribution to TTG. Paying special attention to each client’s brand, personalized needs and individual interests, he strives to create compelling concepts utilizing intuitive and highly-refined design solutions. In addition to traditional and digital design work and oversight at TTG, Tom also boasts a wide portfolio of web development projects with the company, allowing him to stretch his CSS and HTML skills across multiple platforms and disciplines. He feels that being a designer in the digital landscape of websites, eCommerce solutions, email marketing platforms and social media, it is important to understand the code that goes into these areas as it assists his ability to tailor designs specifically targeted to achieve the best end result and further builds understanding and communication with backend development teams.

In his off hours, Tom is an avid pop culture enthusiast, staying up to date on the latest shows, films, comics and games. He can also typically be found taking part in a whole host of artistic activities that help him further stretch his creative legs. Regardless of the activity, Tom is always accompanied by his dog, Eli, and his cat, Tib.

Design, Photography, Illustration, Digital Imagery Manipulation, Wesbite Development

Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, HTML/CSS, Wordpress


Courtney Dumont

As Senior Marketing Strategist & Analyst at Technology Therapy Group, Courtney is energized by the ability to flex both her left and right brain daily. Courtney discovered her passion for Marketing at Bryant University, where she spearheaded research on students’ perceptions of Social Media Marketing for her Honors Capstone Project. After graduating Bryant in 2012, she joined the Technology Therapy team, where she’s honed her skills in social media, search and social advertising, email marketing, SEO, and more.

Since joining the team, Courtney has created digital marketing strategies and managed campaigns for clients across the country, ranging from plastic surgery centers, to jewelry stores, to construction companies. With a cohesive, cross-channel approach and a focus on data-driven decision making, she has increased their leads by up to 217%. But Courtney doesn’t leave her zeal for social media at the office; she also runs a local foodie Instagram account with her husband to document their meals across Rhode Island and beyond. Check them out: @hoppilyfed.

Marketing Strategy, Data Analysis, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Social Media

Google Analytics, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Facebook Creator Studio, Instagram, Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Emma Mail, Google Data Studio, WordPress, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Microsoft Office