Platforms are pushing us to consider Sponsored Messages when setting up paid campaigns. LinkedIn is even serving me carousels trumping their value. But here are three reasons why I just don’t buy it.

No.1: It’s only a response to infeed congestion.

Like audience networks, they exist because platforms are using up their inventory. Hungry for more ad spend they invest in more placements to enable them to take your money when you can’t feature in the newsfeed.

No.2: People aren’t in the active discovery mode.

Even if it were a good placement, it breaks too many permission marketing rules. When people scroll they’re seeking to be engaged, but the inbox is a different beast. Do you really respond as well to unsolicited calls as you do to ads you come across in the newspaper? Attachments to the codes of digital spaces aren’t that different from physical ones.

No.3: It’s fabricated authenticity.

Maybe this is more to do with execution than the format. But it comes across as inauthentic to pretend you’re reaching out and even worse when the technology makes you seem false (e.g full names).

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