Sex and Violence: How the UK and US block content keywords

01/30 By John Bonanno

Increasingly, brands want to be sure that their digital advertising is served in an environment that’s brand safe. That means that ads appear only adjacent to content that aligns with the brand’s image, values, and messaging. Often that means avoiding obvious pitfalls like hate speech or violence, but  there is no one size fits all approach to brand safety.  Content that’s off-limits for a family-focused CPG company is not just in-bounds but potentially desirable for an alcohol brand.

These differing brand safety preferences aren’t limited to product categories, they’re also subject to change by region depending on the local culture and media environment.   

Consider the United States and the United Kingdom, despite but their obvious commonalities of language and culture, the two countries have notably different brand safety concerns. In 2017, US advertisers primarily blocked URL keywords related to gun violence and terrorism, while UK advertisers prioritized avoiding sexual content and adult language.  

Advertisers can always learn from what others are blocking to see if other’s keywords also apply to their brand.  The start of 2018 is a great time for advertisers to review their blocked by keyword lists and make sure other brand safety settings are up to date.  Here is to a brand safe year!  

Click here to see December 2017’s Most Blocked Keywords or here to download our brand safety essentials guide to learn more about how to protect your brand.