How IDG got 38 percent of ad blockers to whitelist its sites

Tech publisher IDG can’t ignore ad blocking. On average, a quarter of its visitors block ads on its tech publications, which include CIO, Computerworld, Macworld and PCWorld. That’s roughly in line with the industry. But the ad blocking percentage can go as high as 45 percent on its sites in Germany, where it’s been estimated that 30 to 50 percent of internet users employ an ad blocker.

But the company’s had success fighting back against ad blockers thanks to a tough-love approach. In January, when the company blocked people from accessing content on its U.S. sites unless they turned off their ad blockers, 38 percent of visitors whitelisted its consumer sites (and 37 percent on B2B sites). It’s also emphasized messaging that explains that advertising supports IDG’s ability to deliver content.

“We’re trying lot of things to say to our readers, ‘We want you to get this content to you so you can do your jobs better’,” IDG CEO Mike Friedenberg said. “If we ask them over time, we’ll educate them.”

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