New media types have made it possible to gain more information on the customers and consumers. A good example is Faceable that grew rapidly through the past 5 years, while it had 350 million users in 2010, it had 600 million users In 2011 (Marriott et al 2009). Social media websites are more Important for businesses to publish advertisements and retrieve Information from. In 2002 the collected personal information for future marketing (You et al 2011). According to the writer, the information is collected and saved in databases and it provides an in- PPTP view and gives better understanding on different aspects of consumer behavior.
It provides information on purchasing behavior on the Internet, but can also collect demographic and geographic information on consumers. Companies like Google sell information about their users to develop personalized advertisements. But to what extent is this type of advertising actually useful to both consumers and advertisers? The new type of online advertisement cannot at all times be regarded as a positive development in the world of advertisement even though the advertisers think otherwise.
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Hence, the use of personalized advertisements online may weaken the effect of the advertisements since people experience it as an unpleasant way of advertising, it reinforces privacy concerns and results in ad avoidance. First of all, consumers may experience personalized advertisements as unpleasant. Personalized advertisements irritate most consumers when the content of the advertisement is not true, exaggerated, confusing or when the advertisements appear too often (Lie et al 2002). People do not want to be bothered at all times with advertisements.
The fact that some advertisements are personalized does not always immediately mean that the advertisements themselves are of greater quality or more important than non-personalized ads since they do not always add special elements that could possibly make them more appealing to consumers. According to Guppy (2013) adding convenience, incentives or unique values are the only ways to grab the attention of the consumer and make use of the opportunity to offer personalized advertisements.
The advertiser can think of offering special offers such as discounts by adding special coupons or by liking special web pages on Faceable to get the chance to win something. According to the author you give the consumer something in return. Brands can also create applications on smartness that add incentives such as finding the nearest store and providing extra information. This can enhance the brand loyalty (Guppy, 2013). It is important that the advertiser understands the individual consumer because if the message is not well targeted, the consumer will develop negative feelings towards the personalized advertisements.
Research conducted by You et al (2009) among 231 participants showed that the general feelings towards personalized advertisements were negative and that personalized advertisements were not taken seriously. Another factor that leads to the dislike of personalized advertisements is skepticism. Consumers realize that the goal of advertisements is to motivate or to persuade the consumers and therefore creates a feeling of distrust. (Marriott et al 2012) Second, there is a growing consensus that personalized advertisements harm the privacy of the consumers.
Privacy can be harmed in multiple ways such as keeping track of an individual’s history on the World Wide Web by using ‘cookies’ or search engines such as Google selling the keywords used to search their database. Such a threat of privacy weakens the effect of personalized advertisements because people feel betrayed when companies try to increase revenue by advertising their products personal information such as email address, phone number or address often feels like a threat to consumers. They perceive this as being followed and watched by a firm.
This results in a fear of loss of freedom of control (You et al 2009). A research in the United States has shown that 95% of Americans say that it is important to them to control and protect their private information and are disturbed by the concern of the buses of personal information. The research conducted by You et al (2009) also led to the conclusion that people have high concerns regarding privacy. In this research a score above 3. 0 for each statement indicates a negative relationship towards personalized advertisement. The following statement was rated with a score of 3. 2 regarding personalized advertisement: “l feel curious and uncomfortable because the advertiser got my personal information without letting me know’. This shows that personalized ads at first sight create a negative feeling instead of a positive feeling that the advertisers wanted to create. Hence, the goal of the advertisement is not reached. But one might argue that the consumer can control the exposure of private information since consumers are responsible for their own behavior on the World Wide Web. Second, people do not always take the time to carefully read lengthy disclosures before agreeing to them.
Another example can be the ease of accepting cookies on websites. People most of the time accept these cookies without realizing the effect it might have. But even though it may sound reasonable to make the consumers responsible for safeguarding their own information, is it still important to vive consumers the feeling that their information is treated with discretion because if they do not perceive it that way, the attitude they develop towards the personalized advertisement will be negative. According to Rap et al (2009) the government could also play a larger role in the position of safeguarding private information.
At this moments special ‘do not call lists’ already exist where people can subscribe to make sure they are not bothered by phone. But the government could learn people more about behavior on the Internet by teaching them how to keep some private information out of the hands of advertisers. But Rap et all (2009) also point out that privacy issues will remain significant as long as humanity exists. Finding a right balance where all parties are satisfied is extremely difficult. Therefore it is important to understand the privacy concerns by consumers and try to find a solution to satisfy them.
Third, personalized advertisement can lead to add avoidance by ad irritation and skepticism towards personalized advertisement, which weakens the effect of the ad. Research on 442 students from college has shown a direct link between irritation by advertisement and advertisement avoidance as result (Marriott et al 2012). The tutor describes the explanation for advertisement avoidance as the following: “People are motivated to resist change when they perceive that their personal freedom is threatened. ” (Marriott et al 2012). But we can distinguish different types of responses to avoidance by consumers.
The 3 types are: ‘cognition’, ‘affect’ and ‘behavior’. The cognitive component refers to the consumers’ belief about a component such as ignoring an advertisement. Second we have the affective component which refers to the feeling or emotional reaction to an object. An example the behavioral component, which refers to an action to avoid an object. An example could be choosing not to open an email or advertisement letter (Choc et al 2004). This would be the complete opposite of the initial intention the advertiser has by using personalized ads.
Hence, it can be said that personalized advertisements do not lead to the wanted effect. However, there are also situations where the opposite result is shown and thus showing the effect it could also create. According to Marriott et al (2012), when advertisements are personalized and shown to people have had previous business transactions with companies it can lead to sympathy towards the company. The consumer has the feeling that they put extra effort in the advisement to personally address it to them and can result in a positive feeling.
In the end it can even lead to easing the overall negative perceptions towards personalized advertisements. It remains very difficult for advertiser to estimate the result of the new approach on advertising since all consumers create different responses to it. To conclude we can say that research has shown that personalized advertisements are seen as rather disturbing and annoying by consumers and lead to add avoidance in the end due to add irritation and skepticism. Another reason is the privacy issue that still remains a difficult problem to solve for both advertisers and consumers.
Personalized advertisement is not necessarily ineffective, but right now it is not functioning at its optimum. This means that the advertisers should be careful with sending their advertisements to consumers. They should evaluate the advertisement very precisely and try to add value for the customer as well. As mentioned before by Guppy (2013) it is important to add convenience, incentives or a unique value. Personalized advertisement can be very useful when the advertiser creates a injection between the consumer and the advertiser.
Trust is also of importance to make sure the consumer feels safe to give personal information and to know the company handle their delicate information with care. The research conducted have most of the time used students as their main target group since they are the group that makes the most use of the Internet. To get a complete image of the opinion of consumers towards personalized advertisements, new research should be conducted with a sample which resembles the actual population in a country. It remains very important to conduct new researches at all times due to the rapid change in genealogy and advertisements.
The researches at this moment do not always take new types of media evolved over the past 3 years into account, but they have a great impact on the new styles of advertisements. Hence, focusing on new media types in relation to advertisement could give a better insight in how consumers perceive personalized advertisements. Once advertisers understand how to approach their consumers in an effective way, the advertisements might become alluring instead of annoying. Reflection I approached writing this essay by using an outline. Creating an outline helps me to et my ideas on paper and gives me a good idea on how to start.