Attention Retention: Targeted Advertising and the Ex Post Role of Media Content
Posted: 22 Apr 2012 Last revised: 1 Oct 2012
Date Written: April 20, 2012
I present a new ex post theory of media content. I use this theory to analysis the effects of rapidly advancing advertising technology. Introducing more accurate ad targeting intensifies product market competition as advertisers compete to serve consumers with precisely targeted needs, and the imperative to rapidly arrest consumer (content) search with high-quality content is thus increased. This dynamic is not unambiguously positive: enhanced content can lead to increased product prices — offsetting any welfare gains enjoyed by consumers — and can prove so costly that publishers would benefit if they could coordinate around implementing lower targeting accuracy or higher content costs. This paper was previously titled "Attention Retention: Targeted Advertising and the Provision of Media Content".
Keywords: media content, targeted advertising
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