A lot of business successes were born ad-free. They even accelerated their growth through anti-advertising speeches (remember Facebook, Twitter or more recently Whatsapp) (cf. the CEO manifesto published couple of weeks ago).
But there’s a time reality comes knocking at your door.
You want to go public, you want to raise funds, you want to hire people.
Then come the business model issue – even if a lot of urban legends tell us that the best BM in town remains users x users x users – and boom, advertising appears, smiling at you, showing how it’s the best alternative to remain free at the expense of a few banners. Example: Facebook is now a sewer making everyone paying – sometimes twice* – for shitty services.
What happens next is obvious: people are polluted, come less and less often, then drop the service after being told that the kid in town is ——-.
As video killed the radio star, advertising kills digital platforms. Whatever it is: native, entertaining, bluh bluh bluh. People are bored then leave. Period. 1% of good advertising doesnt make an exception.
For people, the only way to survive banners is to oupace advertisers. By leapfrogging from platforms to platforms, pursuing a neverending quest for ad-free spaces.
Wait. After all, if advertising screws innovation, this is good news. It boasts innovation.
As for an experience where subjects need to find solution under constraints, advertising invite people to get rid of by innovating.
So brands, you’ve got your answer. As for the people, the only solution is to outpace innovation.
Either create awesome experiences as Red Bull and start selling contents, let people play with your products as for Beck’s Song Reader, make them smarter like Lego We Do initiating kids to robots.
Squeeze the present to enjoy the future. This is dangerous game but eh, you’d better be the hunter than the hunted right?
* Getting Facebook in 9 minutes :