Blockchain and distributed ledger technologies are affecting industries all around us: finance, insurance, real-estate. The next target is digital marketing.
While using blockchains is not a cure-for-all solution to the current problems of digital marketing, it has a huge potential for cutting down middle-man and complexity.
Many powerful middlemen currently handle digital advertisements. Website owners and companies looking to advertise rarely communicate directly with each other. Instead, they turn to services like Google AdSense, which makes sure that a credible and relevant advertisement is displayed on websites, and all the clicks are registered accordingly.
What happens with the blockchain?
As blockchain registers all transactions with transparency and immutability, parties can directly trust each other. Advertisers can directly look at how certain websites perform on specific advertisements and handle pay-per-click transactions directly.
Browsing the internet lately has been turning into a sour experience – firstly we are bombarded by ads. There is a pop-up here, and a banner there, plus everybody wants us to turn on notifications. Secondly, websites have been sneaking away our data with cookies and trading them around. There is so much information about us only; sometimes I wonder if online advertisers know more about me than I do.
Blockchain has the possibility of bringing back consumer control and transparency. Customers would be able to see where their information went, what it used for and charge advertisers using their data. Blockchain could allow customers to get a micro-payment for looking at advertisements or opening a newsletter.
Blockchain can bring a whole new level of transparency and trust in the relationship between advertisers, platform holders, and customers. It will bring whole new accountability to companies while decreasing the role of middlemen through direct transactions.
Without a doubt, Google will not go anywhere yet- while the possibility for blockchain-based digital advertisements is here, there are not many proofs-of-concept however. One of the key examples can be the revolutionary website and cryptocurrency Brave, which rewards users for viewing advertisements when they want to see. It also gives the possibility for readers to reward their favorite publishers- this way they do not only have to rely solely on advertising revenues.