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WATCH: Are Targeted Ads Creepy or Useful?

WATCH: Are Targeted Ads Creepy or Useful?
Targeted Ads

Our CEO, Dave Goldberg, headed to Bloomberg TV for this month’s segment of SurveyMonkey Shakedown to talk with Emily Chang about the state of digital ads, including targeted ads. Specifically, how do people feel about them when using their favorite mobile apps or websites? Are the ads a nuisance, creepy or are they actually helpful?

Using SurveyMonkey Audience, a great tool for collecting specific insights from a target demographic, we asked nearly 600 Americans their thoughts on this marketing tactic.

Take a look at Dave’s full segment as well as a capture of our survey results below.

More than half have some level of comfort when they see targeted ads.

  • A hefty 57% of respondents say they’re okay when ads specifically geared towards their interests, buying needs, etc., pop up.
  • 43% are “not at all” comfortable however.

Are targeted ads “creepy”?

  • Survey says…Yes, many folks find these ads “extremely to quite” creepy (38%).
  • Age makes a difference! 18-29 year-olds are more accepting with well over half at 65% saying they have some level of comfort with targeting ads.

Consumers are taking action to prevent targeted ads from showing up.

  • A huge chunk of people don’t know how to prevent online advertiseres from using their personal data to target ads (68%).
  • Those who do know how to safeguard themselves, over half (52%) have taken preventive measures to limit the number of ads they see.

Digital ads are most noticeable on a desktop vs. phone or tablet.

  • 44% of respondents report clicking on ads when they’re surfing on their desktop computer rather than they’re on-the-go.
  • Under a quarter say that they notice digital ads from their mobile.
  • A mere 9% say they see them when working on their tablets.

People click on ads the most on desktop vs. phone or tablet as well.

  • In line with how much people notice ads, they tend to click on them the most also when sitting at their desktop.
  • Only 6% say they click on digital ads from their mobile phones.
  • Tablet users barely bother with ad-clicking (4%).
  • Just under half say they don’t click on ads whatsoever at 47%.

Pop-up ads and video ads are the most annoying.

  • 63% of users can’t stand the dreaded pop-up ads and 16% are not fans of videos.
  • Ads that are within a social networking newsfeed or stream are less annoying to people (4%).

Consumers don’t want to see ads when using apps on their smartphones.

  • 32% are “extremely” bothered when they notice digital ads when on mobile.
  • This number drops to a quarter when they’re on their desktops however.
  • Tablet users are split with 24% saying it’s really annoying and 25% saying ads don’t bother them at all.

Deleting does happen because of digital ads.

  • Over half surveyed at 54% say they’ve deleted an app, email account or a social networking account because of the prevalence of ads.
  • They’re the least tolerant of in-app ads: 32% have deleted mobile apps.
  • Most people (60%) will not pay to browse the Internet ad-free however and 76% wouldn’t pay to visit social networking sites ad-free.

Interested in checking out the full set of results? Head on over to our Slideshare page for the full breakdown.

How do you feel about digital ads? Let us know in the Comments section below!

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