The real question of course is: Does online advertising work?
Unfortunately, it’s impossible to give a simple answer to this apparently straightforward question.
For starters, this is not a single question, but at least three different ones. The right question to ask would be: for whom does online advertising work?
Do banner ads, what we once called interactive advertising and now call display ads because nobody clicks on them, and much less “interacts” with them, work for publishers? Do they work for advertisers? Or do they just work for the middlemen based in Silicon Valley?
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Starting in 2000, I have worked or consulted for a number of start-ups from more countries than I can probably remember: Germany (Ciao); France (Meetic); Italy (Ennunci); Sweden (Twingly); Italy/Ireland (Zzub); Denmark (Atosho); Spain (Ducksboard); and now Canada (Transit App).
Unenthused about banner ads from day-1, I started a blog at dotcoma.it well before it was fashionable to do so, and later wrote a Book on the web, advertising and social media:
What Happened To Advertising? What Would Gossage Do?