New research indicates that complex display advertising such as those with 3D animation, video or interactive features can still be effective in building brand engagement regardless of their click-through rate.
Online video and display advertising is one of the fastest growing areas of digital marketing. From its origins as simple text and picture adverts, the medium has rapidly progressed following the proliferation of plug-ins like Flash, Java and HTML5. Today, the most memorable display adverts feature 2D and 3D animations or streaming video.
Like many new forms of advertising, originally many in advertising were cautious about the medium. However, research carried out by comscore and .FOX Networks, the online division of FOX international, has confirmed their central role in today’s online advertising environment.
The study indicates that these kind of adverts have benefits beyond the direct click-through or conversion typically favoured by marketing metrics. Even with minimal clicks, these dynamic and prolific adverts can drive increased site traffic and related search queries.
Four campaigns across four industry sectors were evaluated in the study, with user behaviour tracked from their first impression of the adverts to their later activity online.
The study revealed that consumers exposed to a single video advertisement – such as a clip of footage or a complex 3D animation – were 28% more likely to visit the brand site and nearly twice as likely to conduct a trademark search. For display ads the effects were less immediate but the study showed that behavioural responses climbed steadily as the number of ad impressions increased.
The CEO of Havas Digital, Anthony Rind, who sponsored the study, said that the research was “valuable because it looks beyond the usual data used by the industry for media trading.”
“As opposed to relying on the usual simplistic denominators of click-thru and last event attribution,” he said, “this research centres on consumer behaviour proxies that are better placed to reflect communication goals, defining success based on a mix of visitation, engagement and search behaviour across a four week period.”
In the future, this kind of advertising seems likely to be increasingly important to online advertising. A recent survey of marketing professionals from utalkmarketing reported that nearly three quarters of industry professionals planned to make it part of future campaigns