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So, display advertising. It’s a channel that many people deemed to be dead some years ago due to huge declines in CTR and conversion rates, but today online display advertising is hotter than ever.
The changing technology landscape has completely re-energised the whole display advertising space.
Not only are display-ad revenues growing faster than ever before, but how we use this channel in the overall marketing mix is being redefined, thanks to a lot of brave venture firms and Google.
This week comScore announced the launch of its first ad-verification tool called ‘Validated Campaign Essentials’, alongside a suggestion that over a third of ad impressions on the web are never even seen.
It’s not surprising that’s there’s waste, but the sheer volume of this claim - and the fact that it's been validated by data from 12 leading brands - is sure to raise a few eyebrows.
Econsultancy has this month published an updated version of the Ad Serving Buyer’s Guide, containing detailed information about the trends and issues affecting the online advertising sector as well as useful advice for those seeking a suitable ad serving supplier.
Incredible as it may seem, it’s been 10 years since the Interactive Advertising Bureau updated its standard advertising units. Six new formats selected in a “Rising Stars” competition will be officially sanctioned by the IAB if they gain sufficient market traction in the next six months.
The formats were chosen in large part for their brand-friendly canvases, rich-media functionality, and the control they give to consumers to engage without leaving the page they are on. Marketplace success will depend on how many publishers adopt the units to give them true scale. Whether these units alone can successfully unleash pent-up demand to pull in more brand dollars and stave off the commoditization of CPM rates is anyone’s guess, but getting the seal of approval from the IAB is an important first hurdle to clear.
As one might imagine, running a stock exchange is a fairly profitable business. Case in point: the London Stock Exchange (LSE), which earns over $100m a year in profit running one of the world's most recognizable equities markets.
Most of that profit is, of course, derived from the operations of markets and ancillary market services, such as the distribution of stock information. Yet if you go to the LSE website, you might notice that the exchange has no qualms about making a little bit extra on the side through display advertising.
Online content may be sexy, but even on the internet, turning a profit as a publisher isn't always easy, particularly if you rely on ad revenue to pay the bills. After all, today's advertising market has come a long way since the 1990s.
Advertisers have a seemingly unlimited array of
advertising options, and the proliferation of ad networks and
technologies such as retargeting mean that many publishers have seen
their CPMs decline.
According to an AdAge opinion piece by Tom Hespos, who runs a digital marketing firm, advertising is failing publishers.
Will 2010 be the best year ever for interactive advertising? If the numbers released today by the IAB in conjunction with PwC for he first half of the year are any indication, this year is one for the record books.
For the first half of the year, US internet ad revenues totalled $12.1B, the best recorded number ever for the period, reflecting 11.3% growth over the same period last year.
Q2 was even rosier when broken out. Revenues of $6.2B reflect the second-highest quarterly results ever, and a near 14% increase over Q2 2009.
AOL's "startaround" plan, led by CEO Tim Armstrong, relies heavily on display advertising. Over the past year, the portal has stepped up its content creation business, invested in talent, and tried to increase the quality of its sites. All this is to attract more advertising dollars. Starting next month, the company will unveil new - and larger - ad formats, designed to draw more attention from readers.
But the question remains: Will bigger ads bring more returns for online publishers in 2010 and beyond?
That online display advertising growth so many digital marketers have been anticipating may be arriving a little early. According to a new report from Rubicon Project, digital ad spending grew 47% during the first half of the year.
That's not including search revenues — and despite an economy that has yet to nudge past the brink of rebound.
There is a lot of buzz in the digital world at present around the rise of demand side platforms and real time bidding being the future for display advertising and particularly network buying.
With all the data, technology, and bidding involved, paid search marketers could find themselves best placed to take advantage of the rising popularity.
Social media advertising may still be seen as chump change by some, but brand advertisers like what they see on Facebook. And according to the company's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg, many large brand advertisers have increased their ad spend on the social network by 20 times or more.
If Facebook can retain — and even grow — its userbase over the next few years, the site may soon be stealing large brand contracts from larger digital publishers.
Facebook recently announced it has hit the major milestone of 500m users, following hot on the heels of the news that, in the US, the site has overtaken Google for the first time. This is truly remarkable growth for a site that only launched in 2004.
However, can we judge the effectiveness of Google vs Facebook based simply on the size of their respective user bases? Should we be diverting more budget towards Facebook at the expense of search?