Brand safety is a major priority for digital marketing teams. Ensuring a brand is in good standing with consumers is important to the heart and the mission of a brand. In this reading, you’ll learn what brand safety means, and how companies execute brand safety.
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What is brand safety?
Brand safety refers to the practice of keeping a brand’s reputation safe when they advertise online. This might mean ensuring the brand’s ads aren’t placed next to or on inappropriate or inaccurate content and making sure no copyrighted materials are used without permission.
If you place ads within the display network, and those ads appear on a website that is spreading misinformation, your brand may be damaged because you are automatically associated with brands that are pushing inaccurate information. For example, if your brand values inclusivity, you wouldn’t want your brand’s ads to appear on a site that holds hateful or controversial views.
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has designated 13 topics that brands should avoid associating themselves with to maintain brand safety. Those are – military conflict, obscenity, drugs, tobacco, adult content, arms, crime, death/injury, online piracy, hate speech, terrorism, spam, and fake news. In addition to those, your brand might want to stay away from other topics. For instance, if your brand sells baby toys, you probably don’t want to appear on gambling sites.
So, as a digital marketer, how do you make sure you’re avoiding being associated with topics you would prefer your brand not to be associated with?
As a digital marketer, there are steps you can take to ensure your brand is maintaining brand safety.
- First, you’ll want to define what is considered to be “unsafe” for your brand. Consider what topics might be harmful to your brand.
- Then, make sure you and your team understand that scale isn’t everything. Ending up on every single website on the internet isn’t worth the risk and harm was done to your brand safety.
- Next, use trusted technology. When you’re submitting ads to display networks or social media, make sure you’re using brand safety tools to maintain brand safety. For instance, with the Google Display Network, you can opt out of specific sites that you want to stay away from.
Some strategies marketers take to maintain brand safety are:
Buy ad space directly from reputable publishers.
This will ensure your ads aren’t placed where you don’t want them.
Note: doing this may mean you miss out on potential sales since you’re limiting yourself to certain customers.
Use image recognition.
This will identify images that deem content unsafe for your brand.
Select keywords to avoid.
Publishers will allow you to choose keywords to avoid, so you can include those when you submit your content.
This means making sure you know which regions your ads are running in, which helps you make sure you are remaining sensitive and relevant to all your customers.
Because it’s so integral to your brand’s success, brand safety is a topic that takes a lot of careful consideration. Make sure you know what types of topics and content you don’t want your brand associated with, and then take action. After you’ve carefully considered how to maintain brand safety, publishers and tools will help you take your brand safety measures to the next level.
Resources for more information
The following resources can help you maintain brand safety if you’re using them to publish your ads:
Brand Safety FAQs:
How do you define brand safety?
A brand safety definition refers to channels and practices that help advertisers avoid any placement or context that could harm their brand.
Why is brand safety important?
Brand safety is important to advertisers for the following reasons: It protects them from having their ads displayed next to unsavoury content. By doing so, it prevents ads from appearing on sites that are likely to produce fraudulent clicks.
What is brand safety IAS?
The ideal advertising environment will vary depending on your brand, despite most brands agreeing on what constitutes unsafe content. In addition to maximizing the impact and cost efficiency of campaigns, IAS Brand Safety and Suitability solutions provide customizable control over the contextual relevance of digital ads.
How does IAS measure brand safety?
A brand risk analysis is performed at the page level based on several variables, including text, inbound and outbound links, and URLs. Risk is categorized into eight categories. There are additional specifications available for geo-compliance, keywords, and custom sites.
How is brand safety measured?
All three big measurement concepts are already tracked – contextual relevancy, viewability, and fraud/IVT. Combining them would require a methodology that brings together campaign data, relevant parameters and times and a mechanism to weigh the score.
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