Marketing Madness

Will Blockchain Save Digital Advertising?

If you’re like most people in the industry, you’ve heard the term blockchain associated with Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies before. This is an incredible technology that is opening up new opportunities in the financial industry, but it has a lot of potential for digital ads as well. In fact, there have been several companies that have come out with services that take advantage of blockchain technology to make digital advertising safer and more effective.

Blockchain is a type of digital ledger where transactions are recorded not in a single database or even multiple locations, but embedded into the network as a whole. This helps to ensure it is secure because there is nothing to ‘hack’ into. Bad actors can try to infiltrate the block chain, but at least using current methods, the bad transactions are quickly disregarded because they don’t matchup with the rest of the ledger on the network.

It is an extremely complex subject, but the bottom line is that it is very secure. So secure that it is one of the main factors that has helped to build trust in Bitcoin, which is trading around $5500 per coin as of this writing.

When it comes to online advertising, blockchain would work something like this. A buyer would purchase an ad impression (or many ad impressions). This impression purchase is encrypted and then represented as a ‘block.’ The block is then broadcast out to the entire blockchain network, where those already in the blockchain will approve the event (or reject it). Finally, the event is added into the blockchain where it becomes a permanent part of the ledger. At this point, the purchased impression is verified and can be used.

Since everyone on the network has access to the entire ledger, there is end-to-end transparency throughout the process, which is something desperately needed in the current digital ad industry. Any attempts at ad fraud can be quickly identified and blocked in real time before any significant loss is incurred. The exceptional security also helps to boost confidence from brands, which may help to further expand the industry.

Amino, formerly known as Curren-C, has developed a new digital payment system that borrows elements of ad tech, fintech and blockchain. Founder and CEO Will Luttrell explained how it works:

a.When implemented, Amino’s tech allows ad buyers to create a digital signature authorizing their money to be spent.
b.As ad buys occur, Amino’s tech automatically generates a digital ledger of the transaction that cannot be altered by either buyer or seller.
c.It then tracks each time an ad runs, all the companies involved in the supply chain and how much money each company is making along the way – and ties that back to the financial record which it uses to automate payments to all parties.

While it is far from a sure thing that the blockchain technology will become an important part of the digital ad industry, it is absolutely something to look closely at. There seems to be very little downside to it, and it has a huge amount of potential for building trust and addressing many of the issues impacting the industry.

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Pesach Lattin

Pesach "Pace" Lattin is one of the top experts in interactive advertising, affiliate marketing. Pace Lattin is known for his dedication to ethics in marketing, and focus on compliance and fraud in the industry, and has written numerous articles for publications from MediaPost, ClickZ, ADOTAS and his own blogs.

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