Sponsored Content is is very crucial in advertising. It helps the brand stand out more than other companies that are being advertised that are not sponsored, and even more so during certain events.
For instance, on television advertising is highly important during events such as the Super Bowl, and just recently with the World Series. When there are millions upon millions of viewers that are watching, companies and businesses know that they are highly bound to grasp somebody's attention. Not only are their advertisements just simply being shown, they stand out more when it's for a highly viewed event - such as being comedic or touching, so it's something that viewers will remember and causing it togo high up in the marketing tunnel.
As we know, advertisers are also paying a huge amount of money to be shown. Along with that, advertising is also shown by the target age range or gender of the viewers.
For instance, if you watch a sporting event, you'll see more commercials that are sponsored that are relating to cars or alcohol, or if you watch a cartoon you will see mostly commercials on toys, soap opera commercial breaks typical show and sponsor cleaning products or something that more pertains to women, and so forth.
As for the internet, ads will show up according to products you have searched or shopped for previously on your computer. This is more of an attention grabber, knowing that it's something that you personally like. For instance, I get a lot of ads that appear to be coming clothing or cosmetics stores, since that is what I typically shop for, making it more tempting for me to want to buy from them again when I see a good sale advertised!
With that being said, do these ads have any ethical value? We also need to keep readers at the top of the list, however, the content should still remain accurate and true. We also still have to work with conflict of interest.
For instance, according to The Freelancer by Contently, some journalist can be working more on the public relations side of things, whereas some can be working on the paid content side. This can be difficult to get them to work together on creating different news pieces. Later on, it then mentions "with more publications opening their doors to sponsored or donation supported content, and more companies skirting such limitations entirely to create their own content, lines between editorial and advertorial have blurred beyond recognition".
However, many will argue that sponsored content is not journalism. According to an article on Scribd.com, it's mentioned that "journalism may be clearly distinguished from sponsored content by focusing on the purpose behind the material's creation". Later in the article it mentioned that content that is created to serve private interests if those paying for the publication is indeed not journalism. On another note, sponsored content tends to pay a bit more, so journalists will to subsidize traditional journalism to end up paying less.