Targeted Advertising Survey: Many Worried About Privacy Violations

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Posted Dec 20, 2011
Anne Pilon

As the way we communicate changes, the way companies advertise have to adapt to stay relevant. Many companies have begun targeting their online ads to users who may be more likely to show interest in their products, based on their past internet usage. Some say this might be a violation of privacy, but others argue that it just makes good marketing sense. What do the customers think?

targeted ads

Noticing Ads

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 20% of respondents said they usually pay attention to online ads. 61% said they see them, but don’t pay much attention. And 19% said they don’t pay any attention to online ads at all. 11% said they believe many of these ads are already targeted to their specific interests, 75% said they sometimes see ads that are targeted to their interests, and 14% don’t think any of the ads they see are targeted to their interests.

Targeting Consumers

59% of respondents said they would like to see ads targeted toward their specific interests, and 41% said they would not. Of those who weren’t interested, 54% said they might be interested if the targeted ads contained information about discounts or coupons.

Violating Privacy

As far as using internet history and other online information about users in order to create ads targeted for their interests, 59% said they feel that violates their privacy, 17% think it is a good idea, and 25% did not care one way or the other.It seems that even though many consumers like the idea of targeted advertising, they don’t like the idea of their personal information being used in that way. Can marketers come up with a different way to target consumers, or will privacy concerns just lessen over time? The widget below shows the results of the survey in full. Be sure to click “open full report” for full details.Photo Credit: Targeted ads on Facebook from FlickrWhat do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on December 19 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

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