Person holding cell phone while working on a laptop

The internet is hundreds of trillions of gigabytes. And every single corner of it is covered in a thick layer of badvertising sludge. Open up Instagram, you get ads for orthopedic dog socks and dropshipped junk. Open up X and you’re faced with crypto bros peddling their latest get-rich-quick scheme as far as the thumb can scroll. Open up YouTube and it’s ten unskippable, unintelligible, uninteresting ads in a row.

Bad ads aren’t anything new. But by Jove, why are there so many of them?! Here are three reasons ads feel so bad these days, and how you can make sure your marketing isn’t adding to the issue.

Advertise with purpose

Your advertising should solve a problem. And that problem should not be, “Bossman needs us to run an ad.”

Ask yourself some questions. What does your brand need? What do you want your marketing to accomplish? What would you consider a win for your business? Is it brand recognition? Lead generation? Increased traffic? Customer acquisition? Setting specific and measurable goals helps make sure that you’re getting the most out of your marketing efforts (and budget).

A scalpel, not a shotgun

We were promised a future where what we see online is relevant. Where we are served ads that align with our interests. Where the marketing algorithm is at least somewhat helpful.

Instead, we see this:

Screenshot of a Tweet reading: "Im was able to make 5k from zeromanta drop today, isnt that crazy"

And this:

Screeshot of a Tweet reading: "Beneath the veil of uncertainty, courage blooms, nurturing the seeds of resilience within the soul."

And this:

Screenshot of a Tweet reading: "You like magazines? Like it!)"

And that was just in one week on the Artist-Formerly-Known-as-Twitter.

An incredible benefit of online advertising is the ability to be surgical with your placements. And yet audiences are constantly asking “Why am I seeing this?” By shotgun blasting your advertising to everyone, you’re advertising to no one.

A well-defined audience is the foundation of an effective campaign. Before you even start conceptualizing your marketing, take the time to understand who you are marketing to. You’ll find that your creative is elevated and your money goes further.

Give a damn

It’s easy to write off online and digital marketing as a budget-friendly, low-stakes endeavor. And while the price might be lower than traditional media, the impact can be just as great. Because the way your brand appears is important no matter the channel. Take it seriously. Treat your online and digital presence with the same reverence you’d treat a TV spot.

Audiences recognize half-assery. Audiences recognize bullshittery. Audiences recognize inauthenticity. Don’t phone it in.

If you’re looking for an agency partner that never settles for badvertising, look no further. We’re always here to chat.