hey, kids, 2x2 chart!
29 August 2017
What's the difference between spam and real advertising?
|No interruption||organic social||content marketing|
Advertising is a signal for attention bargain. People pay attention to advertising that carries some hard-to-fake information about the seller's intentions in the market.
What seems undoubtedly true is that humans,
like peahens, attach significance to a piece of
communication in some way proportionally to the cost
of generating or transmitting it.
If I get spam email, that's clearly signal-free because it costs practically nothing. If I see a magazine ad, it carries signal because I know that it cost money to place.
Today's web ads are more like spam, because they can be finely targeted enough that no significant advertiser resources stand behind the message I'm looking at. (A bot might have even written the copy.) People don't have to be experts in media buying to gauge the relative costs of different ads, and filter out the ones that are clearly micro-targeted and signal-free.