Brand safety continues to be an issue for advertisers who are looking to reach digital audiences. Fears of ads being run against inappropriate content on platforms like Facebook, YouTube, and Snapchat are only getting worse. A new study conducted by Verizon’s Oath surveyed 304 U.S. advertising decision makers for their thoughts on brand safety and uncovered the issue is only gaining importance.
According to the report:
- 94% of advertisers are worried about brand safety
- 58% are more concerned about it this year than last year
- 42% say user-generated content sites aren’t addressing it
- 45% are shifting spend to premium sites to stay safe
To address the growing issue, advertisers are changing programmatic buying strategies in several ways.
- 50% are putting pressure on their partners to screen for brand safety
- 47% will implement third-party technologies
- 45% are moving spend to well- regarded premium publishers
- 44% are using blacklists with programmatic partners
- 40% are using whitelists with programmatic partners
- 29% enable more granular site targeting
- only 3% say no actions are planned
The negative views toward social platforms efforts in providing brand safety are fueled in part by YouTube’s recent adocalypse scandal. In 2017, videos centered around racist, homophobic, and anti-Semitic views posted on the platform were running ads from brands like Coca-Cola, Amazon.com, and Microsoft. As a result, PepsiCo, Walmart, Dish, Starbucks, GM and a slate of other advertisers stopped running ads (some temporarily) on the platform. Since then, Youtube has placed greater focus on monitoring the content which it runs ads on. The Google-owned company even went as far as hiring 10,000 reviewers to censor YouTube content, however, with millions of hours of content being posted daily, the company has yet to get a firm grip on resolving the issue.