Advertisers Befuddled By Internet, Prefer Cluelessness of TV

Advertisers agree: Internet media companies need to make Internet advertising simple. Until they do,  the Internet will be a sad-assed advertising backwater (AP’s Seth Sutel).  Enough of all these terribly confusing and controversial metrics like “uniques,” “pageviews” (“But what about Ajax?”), “time spent,” “cookies,” “clicks.” Advertisers want simple Internet ad measurement…like TV!

Disney’s Steve Wadsworth, head of the Internet division, summarizes:

“This industry looks like it can’t get out of its own way…We need measurement of the audience and their use of the system that’s clear, simple and actionable for a marketer. You need comparability with other media.”

So THAT’s the problem. That’s why Google grew its US ad revenue 46% in Q3 and the aggregate revenue of 18 traditional media companies grew 1%–because Internet media companies can’t make it simple.

Forgive us, but this line of complaint is 100% bass-ackwards. Internet advertising is blowing the doors off, and the reason is that Internet measurement systems are NOT simple and vapid like those in TV and print advertising. Thankfully, the Internet is NOT comparable to these finger-in-the-wind advertising media–and never will be.

Could Internet advertising be made simpler and even more precise? Of course. But it is traditional media that need to get “comparability” with the Internet, not the other way around.

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