Industry Insights: October 18, 2023

by Jordan DeGraw October 18, 2023

$84 Billion of Ad Spend Goes Poof 

Hello, friends! It’s a new week, and the days are darker but the industry insights are more tantalizing than ever. This week we’re talking about wasted ad spend, black friday shopping starting in October, and how much it costs to go “ad-free”. Let’s go! 


Alrighty, finance aficionados, grab your magnifying glasses and detective hats! The 10-year US treasury bond is whispering secrets in our ears, and boy, is it juicy. With yields gallivanting at a 16-year high, it’s screaming that the golden age of super-low interest rates has bid us adieu. Savers, rejoice! Time to dig up all that gold you have buried in the yard. But for businesses and consumers who’ve been feasting on cheap money buffets for the past 15 years? Time to tighten those belts! The inflation-squashing era has rolled out its red carpet, and what’s next? Well, I’d tell you, but even my crystal ball is playing coy!

Meanwhile, in the bank account reality show, BoF dropped some delectable gossip: the average Joe’s and Jane’s bank accounts have plumped up by over 40% compared to the pre-pandemic era. But here’s the twist — another sneak-peek revealed Americans might just blow through their savings stash by year-end. I smell a dramatic season finale!

In the real estate realm, it seems we’ve hopped into a time machine set to 1996. Translation? Folks are as reluctant to buy homes as they were to let go of their slap bracelets and Tamagotchi pets. It’s been 27 years since we’ve seen such low enthusiasm for mortgage applications. And with mortgage rates doing the cha-cha up to nearly 8%, many aspiring homeowners are thinking, “Maybe I’ll just rent a treehouse.”

But that’s nothing a little retail therapy can’t fix! Mastercard, our ever-reliable holiday psychic, envisions our wallets springing open more generously this festive season. Between Nov 1 and Dec 24, holiday splurges will sparkle with a 3.7% increase from last year. And get this: e-commerce might see a delightful 6.7% jump, while brick-and-mortar shops could enjoy a cozy 2.9% bump. Ho ho ho, merry shopping!

Marketing Industry:

Well, strap on your shopping shoes and rev up your shopping carts, folks! Black Friday may be six weeks away on the calendar, but it seems the retail giants have decided to play a sneaky game of “Why wait?”! You see, Target is doing its little jig with the “Target Circle Week” from Oct 1-7, while Walmart, not one to be outdone, has boogied right in with its “Deals Holiday Kickoff” from Oct 9-12. But the big kahuna, Amazon, is throwing its hat into the ring with Prime Day on Oct 10-11. And guess what? Prime Day isn’t just Amazon’s playground anymore. Over half of shopping enthusiasts (aka shopaholics) claim they’ll be hopping across multiple sites, including Amazon, hunting for those delicious deals.

Would you PAY to not have ads on your social media? Meta and TikTok are doing a little experiment with ad-free subscriptions. Priced at a fancy $10.49 for Meta and a more pocket-friendly $4.99 for TikTok, they’re hoping folks will dish out a few dollars to give pesky ads the boot. But will users? Or will they just keep swiping left on those ads with their free fingers?

Speaking of ads, here’s a not-so-funny joke: almost a quarter of online marketing moolah is expected to plunge straight into the dark abyss of ad fraud this year. That’s a whopping $84 billion going poof! How? Sneaky, sneaky tactics like robots pretending to be humans and clicking away on ads, or “made for advertising” sites that bait you with irresistible clickbait. I mean, fool me twice, shame on me, right?

Lastly, remember those good ol’ days when you could return your shopping mistakes (I mean, purchases) for free? Well, some retailers are now playing hard to get. They’re reintroducing fees for return shipping. A staggering 61% of shoppers gave this move a big, resounding “Boo!” However, some retailers are trying to play cupid and make peace. How? By offering free exchanges but sneaking in a tiny fee for returns. Clever, huh? It’s like they’re saying, “You can leave, but you can’t take your money with you…”

Just for Fun:

Walmart’s head honcho recently delivered a quirky observation. With the rise of weight loss meds like Ozempic, they’ve spotted a little dip in the snack aisle traffic. Maybe folks are trading their chips for a side of… self-control? Morgan Stanley, wearing their future-seeing glasses, has chimed in with a prediction: by 2035, 24 million Americans will be on the appetite-suppression bandwagon. That’s a whole lot of people saying “Nah, I’ll pass” to that second slice of pie.

Speaking of weighty matters, a fascinating study took a dive into the world of aviation. The findings? If every airline passenger magically shed 10 pounds (maybe by leaving their emotional baggage behind?), United Airlines would be laughing all the way to the bank with an extra $80 million annually saved on fuel costs. So, next time you fly, just think: your last-minute decision to skip that dessert might just be helping the airline’s bottom line (and yours). Safe and slim travels everyone 😀

That’s all our industry insights for now, friends! I’m off to compare my snack budget to the price of Ozempic. Join me again next week when I share all the loopholes for dodging return fees.

Your friendly Industry Insights devotee, 


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Jordan DeGraw

Jordan DeGraw

JD is an Enterprise Marketing Consultant, specializing in Paid Social. He finds satisfaction in coming up with exciting new strategies to take things to the next level. He often finds himself seeking to uncover the marketing strategies behind the everyday things all around us.

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