February 11, 2020

Safer Internet Day

“It’s not that we use technology, we live technology.” – Godfrey Reggio

The latest statistics from the World Economic Forum found that 62% of 8 to12 year old South African children have been exposed to at least one cyber risk. These statistics place South Africa in the top 10 of countries for cyber risk.

Worldwide statistics have indicated that children residing in developing countries where there is an emerging IT sector are mostly at risk. It is therefore crucial for South African digital agencies to familiarise themselves with the statistics and put measures in place that ensure the sustainable benefit and protection of not only their clients, but our community at large.

Much has been written about the role of parents in putting safety precautions in place to prevent children from being exposed to dangerous behaviours and unintended messages online. However, the Black Snow Group has come to investigate how, as a leading digital agency, we can engage in practices that promote a better internet for all.

When working with sensitive products that are controlled according to a self-regulatory code such as alcohol, the Black Snow Group has found that using advanced customer targeting tools is crucial in order to find the right customer, at the right time, within the right context, alongside the right content. In this way the risk of children being exposed to unintended messages, such as an alcohol advertisement for underage consumers, is limited.

The latest statistics show that 76% of marketers fail to use behavioural data for online ad targeting. The old model of simply using targeted terms with high frequency views becomes reckless when considering the numerous case studies of this approach gone wrong.

On such example is an airline being advertised opposite a news article detailing an airplane crash. According to standardise campaigns, the advert was served due to the targeted key words such as “flight” and “airplane” and the high engagement around the news article.

A further example is that of bleach products being advertised on a Youtube video where a young girl describes drinking bleach to commit suicide. Once again, the key word “bleach” would have triggered an ad serve of bleach products and the high view rate of the video would have justified an advert placement.

The time has come for advertisers to realise that sentiment and context are key in ensuring their products are viewed in a setting that enhances brand value instead of diminishing it. By putting additional measures in place to focus on the target market, the risk of exposure of unintended message exposure gets reduced.

Take back complete control of your brand’s online advertisements. Partner with the leaders in digital marketing at Black Snow Digital.

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