Of all the stories I’ve covered recently, the industry’s reaction to the ad blocking features of Apple’s iOS9 surprised me the most. I’ve said that before, because I figured everyone knew that ad blockers were already highly penetrated. Depending on whose estimates you take, at least 25% and upwards of 40% of all browsers have an ad blocker installed on them. The reason for blogging about it today is that I’ve just come by some data about how well penetrated ad blockers are on the browsers of an especially important segment of the marketplace: advertisers and agency executives. And guess what? They index higher than the overall consumer marketplace.
According to advertiser and agency respondents to a recent survey by Advertiser Perceptions Inc., 45% of marketers and 41% of agency execs currently have one ore more ad blockers installed on their personal browsers.
I’m not surprised. Ad industry folks are some of the most technologically savvy avoiders of advertising in the world. Partly it’s because they have the technical knowledge to do so. Partly it’s because they are so busy creating ads that they don’t have as much time to spend looking at other people’s ads.
Seriously, if you’ve attended any industry event over the past two decades where a keynoter or panelists turned to the audience and asked how many attendees skip TV ads with their DVR when they come on, you likely saw what I did: Virtually unanimous hands pushed high in the air. Almost like bragging rights. Almost like, “What, are you kidding? Me look at ads?”
Well, the same principle seems to be operating with ad blockers. Industry pros install and use them more than the average consumer. And it’s probably for the same reason average consumers do: because they can.The survey did not ask them why they use ad blockers personally, but if you’re an industry pro and you use one feel free to comment here.