Does Decentralized Advertising Really Work?

The internet was built on principles of freedom.

It was a place for anyone to say whatever they want, free from persecution or censorship. No matter how rich or well-connected you were, you could publish your creations, build an audience, and make money from your talent.

In many ways, the early internet embodied the true spirit of entrepreneurial freedom. These lofty ideals inspired millions to create blogs, video channels, podcasts, and websites to share their ideas and creations with the world.

But is today’s internet really reflective of those values? And was it ever?

To an extent, the answer is yes. Publishers are still free to blog, vlog, and share media. And they can still make money from their content via ads, allowing them to do what they do full time in many cases.

On the other hand, the internet is now much more centralized, with companies like Facebook and Google dominating. Nowadays, content creators almost have no choice but to work through these middlemen. The online world is not the free environment that it once was.

That creates all kinds of problems. In recent years, blockchain has emerged as a possible solution here, and platforms like Kind Ads and BAT are now providing a real alternative to the old system.

To really understand the benefits these new initiatives are delivering, we need to explore the problems with the traditional model.

The Problems with a Centralized Ad Marketplace

In the current system, if publishers want to make money from ads, they’re often forced to work through third parties like Google and Facebook. They’re able to use these platforms to monetize their work, but it comes at a cost. They don’t get much control over how much they charge, and they also lose control over the advertising process.

The result? Publishers often make far less money than they should, and the ads that accompany their content are often irrelevant and annoying. This irritates the publisher’s hard-earned audience, and can even drive them away, which is devastating for their long-term success.

It’s an imperfect system for everyone but the third parties. It makes it hard for publishers to make a decent living from their work, which in turn limits their freedom to share their content full-time.

This isn’t just bad for publishers, it’s bad for everyone, and not just because spammy ads are annoying. The internet benefits from a wide range of content from all areas. It’s this kind of innovation and the sharing of ideas that made the internet great in the first place, and it depends on publishers being able to support their work.

Sure, bloggers and video producers will still work for free. It’s their passion, after all. But they’ll be forced to produce much less, having to juggle their online projects with a day job because their content doesn’t pay the bills. And working in such a stifling system might just push them away altogether.

We need a new system that makes sense, that encourages content creators and rewards them fairly for what they do. That’s where blockchain comes in.

How Decentralized Marketplaces are Providing an Alternative

Blockchain is, in many ways, the perfect antidote to an increasingly centralized internet. It allows for decentralized networks, eliminating clunky middlemen and third-party dominated models like those of Facebook and Google.

Kind Ads is applying these principles to online advertising. In their platform, publishers can work with advertisers directly, setting their own rates and negotiating their own terms, instead of handing that power over to third parties.

The result is a system where advertisers can afford to move away from spammy, annoying ad formats like banner ads, and move to kinder approaches like chatbots and push notifications. Users will have a better experience and be more likely to stick around, view content, and engage with ads.

Publishers can also benefit from Kind Ads’ site analyzer. Using this tool, they can get a free assessment of their site which contains pointers on how to improve SEO, speed, and general user experience.

Let’s see how the analyzer works with Money Radar, a Brazilian publisher of entrepreneurial courses who was recently onboarded with Kind Ads.

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Here we can see that Money Radar has a pretty good SEO score, with some warnings and recommendations. The speed score is a little worse, with more recommendations. Let’s find out more.

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Scrolling down, it’s possible to see a more detailed breakdown of the site speed score, showing what is responsible for any slowness. We can scroll down further for some more specific recommendations for how to improve, sorted by importance.

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The site analyzer is just one of the ways Kind Ads are helping content publishers. By giving them the means to make a living from their work, Kind Ads are helping return to a freer internet, one which encourages independent content.

It’s a return to the principles of old, and a step away from the constraints of a centralized internet.

Featured Image Credit: Photo via Pixabay.com