On January 20 of this year, the Digital Advertising Alliance launched a campaign to inform the public about new forms of internet-based advertising, as well as ways consumers can protect their privacy online. Called “Your A Choices,” it is one of the largest US-based campaigns about consumer privacy to-date. Interestingly enough, “Your Ad Choices” was initiated around the same time the public debate surrounding SOPA and PIPA began to escalate. Both these events have led consumers to think more about their rights online.
The “Your Ad Choices” logo first appeared in online advertisements last year. It was introduced with one specific function: to serve as an advertising option button, which allows consumers to decide whether they want to watch online advertising based on their specific internet navigation activity. This practice makes it possible for brands to offer their users ads that correspond as closely as possible with their interests – while also providing consumers the opportunity to opt-out. This strategy is closely associated with the practice known as “Permission Marketing,” which is typically characterized by an emphasis on security, transparency, and user control, thereby promoting self-regulated best practices.
Self-Regulation in the Advertising Industry
The DAA is a strong advocate of self-regulation in digital advertising. It develops and implements industry practices and rules of conduct, to which advertising professionals voluntarily submit. But is there truly a need for such standards alongside economic regulation in the market, as well as legal regulation from the state?
Indeed, legislation is adequate to establish general principles (for example, that advertising should not be misleading); however, the protection offered in theory may not actually be available in practice – after all, the law is typically slow to respond to consumer protection complaints. In contrast, self-regulation is specifically designed to proactively address the details and nuances of advertising content, and offers consumers a simple form of protection. Self-regulation helps prevent actions that might cause harm or injury, as opposed to after-the-fact legal sanction, which seeks only to repair damage that has already taken place. Thus, the form of self-regulation promoted by the DAA is not designed solely to benefit the online advertising industry, but also to protect the general public by incorporating the option of internet-based advertising.
Brazil’s sustained economic growth continues to be an example for economies in Latin America and throughout the world. The Brazilian Ministry of Finance’s 2012 projections are once again very encouraging, predicting an estimated growth rate of approximately 4.5%.
These indicators have impacted internet consumption habits throughout Brazil. In recent years, internet usage at all levels of society has increased steadily, reaching a high of 75 million users today. In 2011, the number of mobile internet users nearly doubled. And 99.8% of all new internet plan subscriptions were for mobile phones, tablets, and 3G modems.
This kind of growth doesn’t happen by chance. In fact, the UN believes that expanded use of the internet is a key factor in reducing poverty and promoting economic growth. This could be because the internet plays a fundamental role in modernizing traditional economic activities. And Brazil as a nation is definitely in line with development and innovation.
The way that development and innovation plays out in reality is this: A broader range of high quality services is created to meet the population’s needs. More research is conducted within the country’s borders, more businesses are established, more jobs are generated, and the number of people with access to banks increases. Consequently, Brazilians have greater access to buying and selling mobile phones, resulting in both the creation of new media and the expansion of existing forms of communication.
Ultimately, it seems that Brazil is currently walking the path already taken by other nations with developed economies. The country’s vision is oriented towards adopting, improving, and transforming the way work is done, business is conducted, and personal interactions take place. All this allows Brazil to successfully face the challenges of being an information-driven society in the 21st century.
I remember hearing from Larry Ellison that in 1999, business had not figured out how to use the Internet. At first, I rejected the thought, but within a few minutes realized that we had a long way to go and I agreed with him at the time. I often wonder if we’re figuring it out yet, and in 2011, and looking into 2012, I see a lot of innovations that make it a great time to be growing the e-business unit of most companies.
So let’s take a look at what 2012 has in store for us.
Mobile computing is changing the way we consume content. This was the year I started watching all the seasons of Mad Men, but I watched them on my iPad through my NetFlix app. I check the New York Times in the morning while I’m waking up. I use an app that automatically starts the daily podcast “The Wall Street Journal This Morning” with Gordan Diehl as my alarm clock in the mornings. I subscribed to my first magazine this year on my iTunes account. And I bought more via online apps than I did via the internet. Any good marketer knows that their behavior is a data point of one, but as I think about my changes in how I get my content and my goods, I see that the change is going on all around me. Perhaps that’s why Google just bought a CHECK FACTS Motorola so that they can compete with the world’s largest Media company, (and this might surprise you), Apple. read more
Social networks play a valuable role throughout the life cycle of a product or service. Internet pioneer Larry Weber (2010) identifies how these roles change as a product moves from development to market introduction to widespread adoption:
Development Phase: You can use blogs, wikis, communities, or a combination of the three to solicit feedback about product characteristics.
Introduction Phase: Incorporating digital channels into a product or service release allows you to reach key prospects quickly, and at a reasonable cost. You can use podcasts or webinars to engage and educate potential customers about the benefits and applications of a new product. Communities can serve as reference networks: when someone influential “likes” a new product, other members will begin downloading the free trial and requesting further information within minutes.
Maintenance Phase: Once your product has been sold, you can use social networks to solve problems and provide customer service support, in addition to creating ongoing word of mouth publicity for your product.
In summary, social networks allow you to engage and influence prospects and customers, while also building strong relationships over time.
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