Archive for the ‘display advertising’ Category

Some Credit to BigSoccer.com, but media waste too

April 1, 2009

BigSoccer.com must be doing a behavioral targeting campaign since I am constantly seeing ads promoting ManU kits and the latest boots. I recently went to a soccer site to see when the Chelsea vs. Liverpool Champions League matches were, so I am guessing that is what started the “targeting”. It’s better to see ads that are relevant to my interests than dancing people and “go back to school” ads constantly.

Now, there comes a point when it’s too much. I can’t tell you how many soccer ads I have seen today. To me, there is a diminishing return on this campaign and it has reached that point. If they are using multiple networks, which I assume they are, that’s great to get some more sites, but BANNER burnout occurs much faster. I am guessing they did not net down the sites so that each network have exclusive inventory, even though all say they do, it’s such a small portion. So here I am seeing the same ad over and over.

Ad networks are a great way to target individuals online, after all, they allow marketers to target the user, not the site. That being said, marketers must be careful about over using them and actually doing more harm  than good to their name. Marketers must look at using multiple networks simultaneously carefully, so they don’t waste media spend and annoy their potential customer. Or flight the networks on a trial to see which ones work the best then move forward with a select few or one. Or use a third-party ad server which helps eliminate the issue completely.

I give Bigsoccer.com credit for targeting me as a consumer, but have a sneaky suspicion they are wasting a fare share of their media budget by utilizing multiple networks and not being able to cap overall impressions to an individual user.

Is Facebook radius targeting big for local online advertising?

March 12, 2009

Facebook announced they are now offering language targeting and radius targeting through their platform. Personally, I have not had any conversations regarding targeting Spanish speakers, but I have had a lot of conversations about using Facebook for local advertising. Prior to today, there were a couple different ways to net down the audience size and “target” local markets. I also have an unfair advantage since around 90% of Utah’s population is along the Wasatch Front, which makes it easier. However, not everyone has that luxury of population density.

Imagine someone in California that had a few small locations that wanted to use Facebook, targeting all of LA might not be the best option. They could use Google for search and set custom targeting, but an issue with search is that people have to know what they are looking for and “search”. Facebook’s new targeting option allows advertisers to promote their services in a similar fashion that display advertising works, with much better geo targeting. Since social networks get so much traffic, small advertisers now have another viable model for local advertising on the web.

This could be a large move for Facebook along with their new Pages release which will also increase the amount of local businesses using Facebook. Rather than static pages where there was not many benefots of being a fan, the changes allow for a much more dynamic environment that allows brands to have a voice in social media.

Overall, I like what I am seeing from Facebook recently (hasn’t always been the case, remember Beacon and the T&C’s issue). Any move that helps more companies and individuals move online or move more money online is a good thing.

MSNBC offers self-serve with AdReady

October 2, 2008

MSNBC offers small local and regional advertisers the opportunity to get around there traditionally large minimums. MSNBC has partnered with AdReady to allow smaller budget marketers access to their inventory. The advertiser can build an ad through Adready and then select the targeting and run a campaign for as little as $50 per day.

This a big step in the local online space that search currently dominates with its targeting abilities. I admit the creative for the ad units is not the greatest, but it’s free which is nice compared to paying someone to design the ad unit. If more and more large publishers join this model, it’s likely that the creative will improve as well. This is a big win for online advertising in general. Give the power to the SMB that large companies have.

A lot fewer dancing mortgage ads

September 29, 2008

As the “Bailout” has been turned down, it made me think of the last time I saw a “dancing mortgage ad”, you know the ones that no one likes but work well for companies like Experian. It seems that the economy is taking its toll officially, as the dancing banners used to be everywhere. So you can have your personal thoughts on the bailout plan and whether it should have been passed or not, but at least we don’t have more misleading, crappy mortgage ads. Maybe I can blame them for the economy. People constantly saw lower than realistic rates, and got on the phone with a sales rep and talked into a house they could not afford. There, the reason we are in a rough patch, if not worse, is the dancing banners no one liked anyways. Now they are hated.

Call me old…but MySpace is different

September 10, 2008

Not sure if I should say different, or if it sucks? I have not been to MySpace in quite awhile and went there yesterday looking for an old friend. Wow, was I amazed with the changes that they have made in design and layout.  To be honest, I hated it. I have seen a fair number of busy and poorly planned sites, but MySpace has to take the cake. No wonder why Facebook keeps growing in popularity and MySpace numbers are declining.

MySpace was featured on the front cover of Fast Company recently and the article discussed how they are ready to make the next move in social networking, but I have to question it. If their site is that cluttered and PACKED with ads, I have to believe people will slowly leave. I had just over 100 friends about a year ago when I last logged in. This time, I probably saw at least 10 red ‘x’s’ showing that about 10% of my friends have deleted their profiles. Not a good sign for MySpace.

As much as I dislike the new Facebook layout, it is better than what MySpace has done. Sell out to advertisers and place ads in every small piece of real estate available. I understand the ad revenue model, but at some point they won’t see exponential growth in foreign countries like they currently have and the American market will migrate to another network. This migration will take time, but it will happen.

MySpace is under the pressure of Fox to grow revenue, which I think will ultimately be the dagger in the ground. Unreal growth expectations and revenue expectations to match will be the downfall of MySpace unless they truly do have the next step in social networking up their sleeve.

Good thing Google has ad network to compete

August 22, 2008

Although, about 70% of people use Google, it is still only 9th in terms of reaching the masses on the internet. Google’s ad network however reaches 81% which allows Google to get more ads in front of more people. As Google continues to enhance their targeting and reporting capabilities in the AdSense program, it will only increase the likeliness of improved results for advertisers. Advertisers will begin to use Google’s content network similar to other ad networks like Tribal Fusion, Specific Media and ValueClick. They have already made large strides recently with capping and viewthrough conversion tracking.

Ad networks and properties reach

Ad networks and properties reach

The chart from eMarketer shows the top properties and networks by reach.

What’s up with the “click”

August 19, 2008

I am starting to get frustrated with the online focus of the click. Sure, it’s something that can be measured, and gives media companies something to show how great their site/network is compared to other properties. However, when it all boils down to it, a good “click rate” doesn’t guarantee any further action down the lead/sales funnel. Yes, it helps get the lead to the next step, but an impression can too. Just at a later more convenient time when the customer has decided to come back to the site on their own terms. Just ask anyone that has used an ad server and compares view-through conversions to click-through conversions.

I can’t click on a TV ad (yet at least) or on a newspaper ad but advertisers still spend more money offline than online, at least for now. So marketing directors can handle media without a “click metric” and it appears that social media continues to gain momentum without a resounding “click metric” in it, rather tracking conversations.

So as we move down the online marketing timeline, attribution will become the word that clients, agencies and vendors will be discussing. We all know that a majority of transactions still happen offline but online marketing can have a huge impact on that sale, it’s just hard to nail down the correct attribution. That is the answer that will be worked on in the future, not what small tweak to creative can increase a CTR of .3% to .35%. So click or no-click, attribution will become the metric that gets heads spinning and dollars shifted. Sorry Mr. Click, you had a nice run but it seams like it is going to be coming to an end.

Google offering view-through in AdSense

August 8, 2008

Google announced that they are going to set cookies on sites that offer AdSense ads so that advertisers can now see if the visitor goes to the site without clicking. This is Google’s first move in the “ad server” space and hopefully many more will come. The tool also allows advertisers to cap how many times the ad is viewed by a vistor.

I would like to see them offer this service for PPC ads as well to provide some more data about search as a branding tool. It would also be nice for them to open an ad server that is free, which isn’t too far out of the realm since it seems like Google is willing to give free tools away in return for data. What better way to get costs, CTR’s, dayparting, and geotargeting data from advertisers and publishers than offer a free ad server.

That may be the next step, knowing Google they are most likely way ahead of that.

Youtube to allow publishers to sell ads

June 9, 2008

All the news in the online world is revolving around the new iPhone announcement, but Youtube has some interesting news as well. The giant in the video space has had a hard time monetizing their site and content, and now are looking to publishers to help solve the problem. They are letting professional publishers who have a Youtube channel sell ads on their channel and share the revenue with Youtube.

This is a good step for advertisers, as they can buy advertising on certain channels, but is not the golden ticket to monetizing video that Google thought they could figure out when they purchased Youtube.

Anyways, back to the iPhone craze.

Banner creative: Be careful

May 29, 2008

Dunkin’ Donuts decided to pull a recent display ad as there were several complaints about Rachel Ray’s black and white scarf. Complaints stated that it was a religious symbol supporting terrorism and Muslim extremism. Dunkin’ Donuts pulled the ad stating “the possibility of misperception detracted from its original intention to promote our iced coffee.”

One must be careful when we design creative units as this is a great example. A simple scarf in an ad, turns into a large debate over racism and terrorism. It’s no longer symbols and colors, as simple clothing accessories can cause quite a stir in the media world.