Direct Mail vs Digital Advertising Oversight

Fingers Crossed Behind BackDirect Mail Marketing

We all know that direct mail advertising can be measured with relative ease. A client can see how their funds are directed (i.e. designer, printer, mailer, etc.) The direct mail advertising industry, as a whole, operates in a mostly transparent environment. A regulator not only reviews service standards and on-time delivery, but also the pricing of U.S. Postal Service products.

Congress also keeps a close eye on mail service and pricing. In short, ad mail practices and results are recognizable and have measurable ROI.

Digital Marketing

The Association of National Advertisers (ANA) found that numerous ad agencies are not always operating in the best interest of the client. The ANA report cuts across all media channels with a focus on the opaque ethics of digital advertising.

Companies hire ad agencies to implement strategic advertising strategies. Some of these agencies are using their clients’ marketing budgets for media suppliers that provide rebates to the agency and without their client’s knowledge. Agencies also direct clients’ money to companies with which the agencies are affiliated, when more affordable services may be available.

At the moment the reported practices are legal. The ANA report is just the latest among other reports revolving around misleading and fraudulent practices. Some advertisers are reducing their digital marketing budgets, along with Congress taking notice. The Federal Trade Commission was asked by two U.S. Senators to start an investigation into digital advertising fraud.


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