Are you familiar with the idea of “brand safety” and how it relates to your brand reputation? If not, it’s important you understand this aspect of digital advertising and why your ad placement matters so you can protect your reputation. Keep reading to learn more. 


What Is Brand Safety? 

The Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG) is the leading global certification program fighting criminal activity in order to increase trust in digital advertising. TAG defines brand safety as “the controls that companies in the digital advertising supply chain use to protect brands against negative impacts on consumer opinion associated with specific types of content and/or related loss of return on investment.”

That’s a thorough definition, but maybe a bit hard to follow. So, let’s break it down a little more. When you buy digital ads, you usually choose the general ad placement. For example, you might buy the space of a banner ad on an industry newsletter, knowing that your banner ad will be halfway down the front page and in between some copy. But, what if your ad is next to another ad? And what if that ad is inappropriate or even flies in the face of your company’s values? Such an outcome could cause viewers to misinterpret and negatively view your brand. This is exactly what brand safety mechanisms are intended to prevent. 

Ensuring Your Brand Stays Safe

So, when you engage in digital advertising, you want to make sure the content your ad appears alongside does not detract from – or otherwise tarnish – your brand reputation. Here are a few ways to do this: 

  • Work with a trustworthy agency or partner. At StringCan, we understand the media landscape today and the media inventory that’s available. Keeping our clients’ brands safe throughout their digital advertising programs is a commitment we take seriously. 
  • Exclude anything that isn’t brand safe. When buying ads from programmatic platforms, you can set negative targets. In other words, you specify the types of content that you’re not ok having near your ad. Plan to set as many of these negative targets as you possibly can, in order to have the biggest impact. 
  • Prioritize premium inventory. Oftentimes, choosing lower-cost advertising inventory is what can get you on unsafe websites or next to ill-advised content. Even though premium inventory costs more, it’s worth it. Just consider it an investment into protecting your reputation and brand. 


Digital advertising can be an excellent way to gain awareness and customers, but you must invest strategically. Need help planning your ad content and keeping your brand safe? We’re here to help!