New Marketing Avenue with Skype's Conversation Ads
Skype, a Microsoft subsidiary, is unleashing ads on its free services, forcing Skype users to sample commercial content with each and every call. The company plans to personalize the content and is hoping that the content will find its way into private conversations. Skype is calling their new idea “Conversation Ads”.
Conversation Ads are being touted as an opportunity for marketers to reach out to millions of Skype users by creating a talking point for users. Apparently, Skype and its army of marketers are hoping that Skype users will discuss the ads during various online calls, such as with Super Bowl ads that viewers discuss afterward. While this vision for Conversation Ads is the ideal scenario since traditional marketing such as direct mail or even Google Ads definitely are not the centerpiece of conversations, only time and testing will tell if users will actually talk about the ads in their calls.
Skype’s Plan for Conversation Ads
The way that Conversation Ads work is that users will see ads during their 1:1 audio calls. Skype designed the system to work through personalization of ads in order to have a greater chance of sparking conversation topics between users. As mentioned above, the hope is that the ads generate interactivity between friends and family regarding the brands users are interested in.
Skype has disclosed that Conversational Ads can be purchased by marketers in the 55 markets where Skype is currently available. Users that don’t have Skype credits or subscriptions will be able to view the ads during Skype-to-Skype audio calls. Ads will be silent and the call quality will remain stable.
New Marketing Ads Leads to Consumer Privacy Concerns
The concern is that many may view the customized delivery of ads to be intrusive. Individuals who are engaging in calls about a sensitive subject matter may object to ads displayed about these sensitive topics, for instance. Remember the outcry when Google first introduced customized ads?Continued on the next page