Millennial Internet Users in Canada More Familiar with Interest-Based Ads - eMarketer
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Millennial Internet Users in Canada More Familiar with Interest-Based Ads

Nearly 70% of millennials said they were familiar that ads support free services

September 8, 2016 | Marketing

More millennial internet users in Canada are familiar with many aspects of digital interest-based ads than their older counterparts. Nearly 80% of millennials ages 18 to 34 surveyed by Digital Advertising Alliance of Canada (DAAC) in May 2016 were aware that digital ads are served to them based on their browsing history, compared to under 70% of the total survey base, users ages 18 to 64.

Millennial vs. Total Internet Users in Canada Who Are Familiar with Select Aspects of Digital Interest-Based Advertising, May 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

In each of the select targeting aspects DAAC asked about, more millennials were familiar with the topic at hand than the total respondent base.

What might be most interesting is the relatively large gap between millennial and total internet users in Canada in their awareness that ads support free services. While nearly 70% of millennials said they understood this was the case, only around 50% of the total survey base said the same.

Of course, 50% is still one in two of everyone asked, so it’s not as though older users have no knowledge of digital interest-based advertising—though roughly half of respondents misunderstanding the value tradeoff of ads for content could be concerning to advertisers and publishers.

Internet Users in Canada Who Prefer to Learn About New Brands via Digital Ads, by Age, June 2016 (% of respondents in each group)

But if advertisers are paying special attention to millennial internet users, they may want to pay attention a June 2016 survey from StackAdapt and Leger. Forty percent of internet users in Canada ages 18 to 34 said they prefer to learn about a new brand via a digital ad—but the majority prefer branded content.

So while it’s good to know that many millennial internet users in Canada have knowledge of how interest-based ads work, the reality may be that they would prefer to engage with branded content instead.

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