Digital advertising needs to change: move away for CPN (Cost per Nothing)

I recently found this quote:

“Advertisements are now so numerous that they are very negligently perused, and it has therefore become necessary to gain attention by magnificence of promises, and by eloquence sometimes sublime and sometimes pathetic”

Attention is the main point; it is the most difficult resource to buy that we have on the web. We can buy all the space that we like and where we like, we can create the best possible creativity and we may have the best product on the earth. All this is worthless without the user’s attention.

Online advertising is crowded and the classical model as CPM, CPC, CPL etc. are suffering. Publishers are struggling between premium positions and programmatic and brands are spending large amount of money on search adv and social adv, with very low conversion rate. Marketing dept. are getting crazy on how target the audience through a DMPs, to gain a 0,5% more on conversions (someone said: don’t be happy about the 2% of users that clicked on your adv, but be worry about the 98% that did not!).

I am expecting that some CFOs inside companies will soon start to ask the real ROI of all the money spent in communication.

Something is starting to change and someone is trying to shift the advertising paradigm of cost based on positions. Brands are finally understanding that the adv without attention is like throw money from the windows.

An interesting case raised few months ago: Microsoft and BP started to buy advertising on Financial Times based on time, with a model of CPH (Cost per Hour) ( as said by Jon Sloan from FT on several interviews.

Why should brands pay for a position on an adv overcrowded websites, without any guarantee to be seen, when they can pay only the real user engagement (hence the real value of a campaign)?

I left to say one thing: the above quote was written by Samuel Johnson in 1759. It seems that since then, all changed but nothing real changed! It is time to rethink the online advertising model.


What do you think about this new trend? In your opinion what is the money value of user attention?