What is brand safety?

Maintaining a brand’s positive reputation while advertising online is brand safety. While advertising, an organization must produce content that aligns with their brand image and will cultivate a positive reaction among their clients and consumers. There are various polarizing topics that an organization should avoid including religion and politics. Additionally, organizations should refrain from advertising on websites that contain pornographic, extremist, or hateful content.

How is brand safety different from brand suitability?

A subset of brand safety is brand suitability, which is brand specific. Examples of brand suitability would be an adult beverage company having an ad placed in a children’s video game, which runs the risk of upsetting parents. Or a bottled water company having their ad appear next to an article about plastic bottles polluting the environment. Having the ads placed in a suitable market helps secure brand safety.

Why is brand safety important?

There are several reasons why brand safety is important. One of those reasons is to keep an organization’s reputation protected and viewed in a positive light. If a brand is associated with negative content it can cause consumers to view the brand unfavorably.  

Brand safety also helps organizations remain relevant by ensuring their ads are placed in the correct market and are seen by the consumers the ad was created for. If an ad is not in the correct market, it is not worth the money spent, which could negatively impact the organization’s sales. Not only is it important to have correct placement for an ad, but having correct wording and content will create a positive consumer experience. 

How to ensure brand safety

Blocklist keywords

An effective technique used by organizations to ensure brand safety is blocklisting keywords. This ensures that ads are not placed with certain topics or news stories. If there are blocklisted words on a specific page, the ad will not run alongside it.

Use direct deals or programmatic advertising

Direct deals, or face-to-face interactions, are a traditional approach to advertising and protecting a brand’s image. The downside is that direct deals can be expensive and are typically not the most effective method for small companies. Another option is to seek out programmatic providers, or automated advertising programs that are trustworthy. 

Avoid fraudulent traffic

Fraudulent traffic typically comes from malicious bots that mimic human behavior, interfere with traffic statistics, and steal data from webpages. This type of traffic can have a negative impact on search engine rankings, lead to ad fraud, and harm a reputable brand. Having a fraud protection provider is recommended to keep a webpage safe from malicious bots, which helps to ensure brand safety.


Brand safety is crucial for advertising, especially advertising online. Organizations should be aware of external factors and how they can influence consumer perception. Following the safety measures outlined in this article can ensure brand safety and security. 

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