Since the longest time, malware infested curse has been plaguing the digital world and making the digital advertisers hit the rock bottom of their marketing budget. They are the method of generating impressions through fraudulent ways by the infestation of spyware and malware that automatically clicks on brand ads or by hiring a large number of people who manually click on these ads to increase the revenue and have been rampant in the world of online advertisement since the dawn of digital advertising.
Endemic to your online advertising budget, claims have been made that these frauds have exhausted up to 50% of total budget panned by certain parties without leading to any conversion rate in return.
This drill of “digging a hole in the budget” is done in different ways and at times the marketeers unknowingly participate in the entire scam.
• Masking URL in Bidstream
In this the website’s true URL is masked with a destination where the ad will actually appear. This is one of the most common methods while at the same time requires a very detailed process of going about it.
This advert process has been populated by fraud because the earlier process of online advertising was based on bid-to-get-impression and was not exactly made malware proof.
• Pixel Stuffing and Ad Stacking
Here more than one ad is stacked one over one in the designated space of one display space of one. This is done in the way that the visibility is guaranteed to only the topmost ad while the impression is recorded for all of them.
Pixel stuffing is similar to ad stacking albeit in pixel stuffing the visibility is impossible due to the ads being stuffed in tiny spaces of 1X1 pixels.
• Traffic and Lead Fraud
These fraud creeps in slowly in the marketing budget when the advertising team and the marketing team are not on the same page. If the advertising team, instead of doing it in the legal way, embraces the black-hat highway and approaches a third party that claims to boost your clicks, likes or impressions, then the chances that the flood gate to malware infested online advertisement is being opened that are probably not going to give any conversions.
These third parties are the big players in the field of work-from-home and employ job-less people to click random ads for very minimal price.
Online advertising, brand reputation and product awareness are slow process where the companies have to slowly coax their audience into becoming followers and then to brand advocates. There is no doubt that a successful campaign definitely boosts the top-of-the-mind awareness of your product but burning money in the shade of garnering faux popularity would never help.
According to a study by WPP, the total amount wasted on bot-generated click in 2017 could be somewhere close to a whopping $7.2 billion, which is almost double the marketing budget that online advertisers and the companies aiming to get an online identity paid to be a part of it paid in the year 2016. What should be done in such a situation where there is a dire need of weeding these ads out from your desired funnel of ad-onlookers?
• Turn to Facebook/Twitter Ads
There is nothing better than doing it the legal way. It has only been hyped that Facebook or Twitter exhaust the bids to make you put in more budget. Also, by going for these ads, you can be very secure that ads will be reflected only on these platforms and hence will be free from any third party interference.
• Assess your traffic constantly
Keep an eagle-eye check on the oncoming traffic of your online advertising. Make tweaks to your target audience as they can take you long way in saving money. Keep identifying the location where click farms are situated and exclude them as that is quite necessary in the bigger picture.
• Run GDN remarketing Campaigns
If publisher based fraud is the concern that is disturbing you, then running remarketing campaign is the best solution as the ads will be displayed only to those who have shown an interest in your product.
In any case, running and tracking an advertisement that is not bot-infected looks like a pretty tough task right now and digital marketeers are frantically searching for a relief. The only salvation that we can get is introducing a block-chain process during the inception of these adverts until a bot-proof method is introduced.