July 15, 2010

The Omnicom-Google Deal

For years now (it only seems like decades) The Ad Contrarian has been warning* marketers about the questionable effectiveness of web advertising and the unprincipled, self-serving cheerleading for online advertising that has been going on in the advertising industry.

Now, The Wall Street Journal is reporting that a major deal has been struck between Omnicom and Google worth hundreds of millions of dollars for online display advertising, despite the fact that online display advertising...
"... has come under pressure recently as marketers question the effectiveness of the ads, partly because only a tiny fraction of the consumers who visit a Web page click on the ads.
As far as I'm concerned, this just underscores the unsavory nature of the relationship between agencies and online advertising. The Journal says...
"The trend is starting to raise conflict-of-interest concerns on Madison Avenue.
Ad executives question whether marketers understand that their ad dollars are being used to subsidize technology or other strategic initiatives for ad companies. An advertising company is supposed to seek out the best deals for its clients, and some executives are skeptical whether spending commitments could compromise that goal."
In other words, if online display advertising turns out not to be the most effective use of its clients' dollars, is Omnicom going to eat the cost of this deal, or are they going to put their clients in display ads anyway?

Hmmm, let me think...

* Here are some recent posts on this subject
The Failure Of Web Advertising
Special Pleading For The Web
The Web Advertising Dilemma 
Who's Nielsen Trying To Fool?

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