Most of the articles I write are to business owners. I try very hard to help them understand complex internet marketing concepts so that they can determine how best to promote their business online.
Today, I’m writing to you, the consumer, the user of the internet, with a reminder – one that we all need once in awhile, to stop complaining about internet advertising.
You see, I recently overheard my son complaining about having to watch a commercial on YouTube before his video loaded. You’ve seen these, right? They are brief commercials, usually less than 30 seconds, that you have to watch before your video loads. They’re also called PreRoll. Annoying? At least my son thought so.
I asked my son, “How many videos do you watch on YouTube?” to which he didn’t have a specific answer, but indicated that it was a lot. So then I asked him, “And how much do you pay YouTube to watch all those videos?” See where I’m going with this? I explained to my son that it takes a lot of money to run a site like YouTube. There’s electricity and server space and bandwidth and a bunch of other stuff that I don’t probably know about – and that it is the advertisers who pay for all of those expenses.
This is true of most “professional” websites. Look at ESPN.com or TheTravelChannel.com or your favorite news site. They are all littered with some kind of advertisements ranging from video to banner ads. That’s because it costs money to build, maintain and run a website. Besides the expenses I’ve already named, consider how many human hours are needed to build out all that content that makes your favorite site your favorite site? Someone is getting paid to write those articles and upload them and take those great photos and upload those scores and design those cool graphics.
Would you enjoy having to pay ESPN.com every time you went to their site for the latest update on the Kansas City Royals? Or maybe you’d like to pay a monthly subscription? I don’t think so. I don’t think most of us would like that. So let’s give a little slack to those ads that we endure as we surf the web. Those ads are keeping the internet free, after all.
Oh, and with the growth of Targeted Display, many of those ads are going to be more relevant to your personal interests anyway. So that’s at least something to look forward to.