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Bring Back the Catalog Thrill!

Remember as a kid sitting in the kitchen full of excitement circling everything you wanted for the holiday in the Toys R Us catalog? Let’s bring that back, but for adults! Contrary to popular belief, print media is still alive and serving many purposes when it finds its niche. One must think about the emotional connection that people have to print titles, and learn how to capitalize on it. It may need to be reintroduced to younger generations. JDLs decision to move their company online is of course wise, as younger generations have not become accustomed to print media as well as they have digital media. However, incentivzsing can create more appeal to getting new customers into our printed catalog.

I think the first way we can do so is by adding content into our catalog. Rather than just showing clothing, add lifestyle articles that relate to the consumer. Perhaps an article about ski season or fun ways to stay active, and then putting our clothing that would be related to the article at the bottom of the page. I also think we can put a few items in our catalog that have special codes and can only be unlocked on our digital page with the code from our print. We can even give coupon codes for random items that unlock a discount. Along with this, we can still make money by offering related print ads and coupons for other businesses with related products. If the print represents our brand and does more to bring in the new generation, I believe it would be a huge success. Bring back the excitement that this generation felt as a child!

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The Value in Digital Ads

Digital Ads are extremely valuable to a company, especially when they are directly shown to a consumer who will take interest in the product. I follow many art accounts, and one of them happened to post an advertisement for a very trendy and artistic clothing company. I followed the link and then saw that the account was doing a free giveaway if you tag 4 people on the page. Not expecting to win, I commented tagging four friends. I was later notified that I won the give away and was asked to post a picture of it to my story. This built brand loyalty for me, as I continue to follow the account and purchase their merchandise. This digital advertisement for the give away also generated a lot of traffic and commerce to the page, as people tagged their friends. Lastly, by me posting to my story wearing the product, more people became aware of the brand and looked into it. This digital advertisement, while seemingly insignificant, brings in a lot of business over time.

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Why I Use Ad Block

Avoid Spending Wasteful Money

Every time you search Google fills your eyes with ads hoping you’ll make a purchase. No matter where you go Google will have an ad for you the most prevalent being websites that are text heavy and have glowing and moving ads in the corners. The important thing to note is advertisers spend thousands and even millions depending on the advertisement to get you to purchase. Keeping this in mind simply saying “I won’t fall for their ads” is something they’ve learned to overcome where the ad block comes in to play. This alone has saved me many times from wasteful purchases.

Saving Your Time

The other type of ad to get you is clickbait titles or stories that sound way too believable. Usually relating to famous people or how you can save money that sounds too good to be true. You see them all the time at the bottom of articles in order to keep you on their website and generate more ad revenue. The peace of not seeing these at the bottom of my screen is very relieving

The Negatives

As with everything in life with the good comes the bad. Using Adblock on certain creator or user driven websites like Youtube can usually effect their revenue as most of it comes from ads. Adblock is also the biggest pain when trying to do anything with Google, as sites like Tag Manager or Google Ads don’t work meaning you’ll have to turn it off for those sites or when trying to do anything related with them.

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What made me click through?

Since Instagram knows that I am a musician, I get flooded with tons of sponsored ads from bands that are trying to promote their newly released music. As a result, I generally just listen to the music for a second and if I don’t like it (which is 75% of the time) I just scroll past. For me, what will cause me to actually click on the ad is if I find the music to be unique, with a creative look that pairs well with the group’s sound.

I believe that the best way to get someone to click on your ad is to have a unique, consistent aesthetic that pairs well with music the ad plays. Having a clear theme in mind for the product will make it seem of higher quality and actually worth checking out.

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Click-Through Ads That Actually Get Me

POV: The year is 2020 and you’re aware of the software that is AdBlocker.

Today it is super easy to side-step display advertisements and pop-ups on most webpages users visit. If you do happen to have software like AdBlocker installed on your browser, it usually isn’t until you visit a site that isn’t a retail platform (consider a news website or blog, for example) that you may be asked to ditch your adblocking capabilities in order to use website perks or read content on some pages.

I think due to this phenomenon my biggest exposure to ads in the last several years has truly only come from social media like Instagram and those handfuls of sites that disallow you to block ads. When I do see them, oftentimes they are what we call remarketing advertisements. Whether you recognize them by name or not, you’re certainly aware of the type: targeted ads that will reappear after you abandon a potential conversion on some other website. Say you never officially made an account for that one program, or you never made a purchase on this one website. The fact that you see that same product or service advertised elsewhere, on perhaps the same day, is hardly if ever, a coincidence.

I personally grow really tired of remarketing ads, but I cannot say they aren’t effective in getting me to think consistently about a product, even if I don’t click-through on them. If anything, they can often encourage me to shop around and price compare the advertised products quite often after I leave a site. For me, the most effective ads that I will click-through come down to things that I trust. Things that I don’t consider a waste of time, essentially. These include recurring advertisements like Spotify’s Year-end music compilations and playlists, or any newer ad campaign coming from software/apps/programs that I already use. Because the initial level of trust is already there and I am familiar with the product, I would say that I’m very likely to click-through.

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Nature Backs

Instagram is notorious for placing digital advertisements every 6 posts on their page. Due to whatever tracking algorithms Instagram uses, the advertisements they began showing me were spot on with the posts I interacted with and followed.

My Instagram feed is very nature photography based. It is filled with landscapes, camera equipment, profiles, you name it. However one day when scrolling through my feed, I came across a sponsored advertisement for a company called Nature Backs.

This is a company that almost perfectly matches my personal aesthetic. The image shown for their ad was beautiful, something I would one day hope to produce myself. Not only that, but the product they were advertising looks great. Itt matched the scenery of the image, was front and center so you knew it was the product being advertised. In my eyes, it was the perfect ad. So naturally, I clicked on the ad.

I was brought to their website and right at the beginning was introduced to the companies goals and purpose. In particular, they donate 50% of their logo thread profits to content creators that go out and explore. Pursuing content creation can be challenging, especially if your content is based around travel and exploration. I thought this was really cool of the company to do.

Personally, I have yet to purchase anything from their website, but I frequently see advertisements on Instagram of their clothing. It is only a matter of time before I make my first purchase with them.

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Click Bait

Paying a ton of money to have an ad posted somewhere multiple times or even just once on a popular website, allows for more “clicks” for that certain company. This gets me every time. I am constantly looking things up on google or bing but since my computer knows that I LOVE to shop, shopping ads constantly pop up. Next thing know, I am spending a ridiculous amount on clothes. Occasionally I’ll see “buy one get one FREE” blinking in all caps with lots of colors and I HAVE to click it. This click bait will always stump me into getting whatever it wants me to buy.

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What Made Me Click

To be honest, I usually do not click on ads before I make any purchase in any of those e-commerce: I usually just made up my mind about what I really need and purchase it by searching and checking it out on amazonm; I would just ignore most of the other forms of ads that are constantly shown to me.

However, before I reach my mental maturity, I did click on a bunch of ads for online browser games. They always show up with extremely loud background music to grab your attention, then use the method of false advertisement: presenting you with contents/video clips of gameplays that are not in the actual game itself.

As the stupid ten to twelve-year-old boy, I always fall for that kind of false advertisement. I guess the trick for their craft is to immediately track your attention with the loud blast of sounds(like what people do with babies), and then presents a genre of browser game I have recently and frequently played on their flash game websites(Interests of the viewer), which claims to have insanely good graphics or intriguing game mechanics. They did it by showing a video clip of the game play/cgi of another popular game at that time: starcraft, warcraft or some popular games from PS 2, mainly because I used to own one together with my brother.

But since then, I felt I have lost my trust for the majority of online advertisement, both for products and services, fearing they might just fail my expectation and leave me with shame and disappointment before I close their site.

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The Annoying Truth Behind Clickbait

Ads, for years, have constantly been a nuisance to users trying to watch youtube videos, surf the internet, and now use social media. Though they are inconvenient for users, ads are great revenues for businesses to get their products out to different users who may not directly search for their product.

Clickbait = Money

Oftentimes when you are searching for a pair of shoes or that cool new product everyone has next time you open Instagram there it is and you are scrolling through your feed. This almost forces the user to click on the ad or at least stop because it caught their attention. Many times the ad will even have in large letters the word “Sale” to gain the attention of the user even more causing them to click on the ad and make a purchase.

My Clickbait Story

For a long time, I always thought my phone would listen in on my conversations with friends or family because whenever I talked about a product it would always come up a few hours later on my phone. For some off reason, this would always drive me away from the product until I realized that is how marketing works. After getting over how I believed my phone listened in on my conversations I found how successful companies are that are able to market their ads this way and began buying the products after they would appear on my social media feed.

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Instagram Ads

Why did I click on it? Why did I buy it?

I am always shopping online for better deals on clothes and shoes. I noticed a pair of earrings that I really wanted but were to expensive at the time. As I was scrolling through instagram and I seen that same pair of earrings but on a different page. I kept scrolling on my explore page and I seen the the same pair of earrings 3 times. I ended up buying it for the lowest price I could find. But I realized that I was being targeted for that product. Now my entire explore page is filled with earrings that are similar in style.