Ads viewability won’t solve the ‘viewed’ problem

The advertising industry is moving further towards setting a standard where ‘viewability’ of ads is concerned. That’s good news. But what does this actually mean for your ads, and the likelihood that they’ll be seen and remembered by your target audience? After all, this is the aim of the game. How far can purchasing viewable impressions go towards helping to solve the issue of getting views for advertisers?

Viewability & why it’s being worked on 

Kermit not seeing

There’s been quite a bit of chatter in the last several months about viewability in online advertising. Basically, it boils down to this: as an advertiser, you may be buying ‘served impressions’ for your campaigns, but that doesn’t mean the opportunity exists for your ad to actually be seen. Your ad, for example, might be served below the fold (so out of view) on a website, or on a fraudulent site where only bots will ‘see’ it, or sometimes if an ad-blocker is in use. According to a study run by Google in 2016, more than half of ads served online never actually got seen. The thing is, ads like these would still have to be paid for as served impressions on a display network. Marketers may well have simply flung half their budgets into a furnace. Recently, however, the problem has begun to be addressed by bodies like the IAB, ANA, MRC and 4A’s, with said organisations working with networks to try to settle on viewability standards. Meaning advertisers can pay for impressions that have a high chance of being seen.

The ‘viewed’ problem, and why it won’t be solved by viewability

Binoculars

So that’s all good news from an advertiser’s perspective, and helps them stand a better chance of having their ads engaged with. But it’s not a guarantee by any means. Having a high viewability rate for your ads does not necessarily translate into actual ROI. Ads, for example, can meet viewability standards but simply be overlooked, or seen but not recalled later. And it’s also possible that, with the adoption of viewability standards, publishers can often feel forced into cramming the upper section of a page with ad-space or face having served impressions that don’t result in monetization for them. This may mean advertisers having more trouble rising above the visual noise, grabbing attention and encouraging recall.

A few ways to deal with it

Long story short – viewable impressions matter and make sense, but are definitely not the end of the road where creating engagement and getting people to view ads  is concerned. Advertisers and media buyers need to remain aware that plenty of other factors remain hovering around, waiting to be given due consideration. Placement and creative type, for example, still matters – viewers scan sites a certain way, paying more attention to specific sections. Context and relevance should still be thought of – native advertising can work well here, and thoughtful targeting (e.g. accurate audience modeling) is irreplaceable. Using in-image or in-stream video can also help improve the chances of gaining the attention of your target audience. And don’t forget about the quality of the creative itself, of course! Ads themselves need to be well put-together and thought out if people are to find them eye-grabbing and compelling.

Seeing the bigger picture

Creating viewability standards is a step forward, but advertisers can’t fall into the myopic  trap of believing that paying for viewable impressions will solve all of their problems and result in waves of clicks and conversions. There’s more to a successful campaign than that and a bigger picture that needs to be looked at….viewed, if you will. 🙂

Like what you see? Why not sign up for our newsletter to receive updates straight to your inbox!

Get the Newsletter

5 most interesting things in ad land right now

So what’s been going on recently in our world and yours? Let’s have a look…

Expedia Shares a Powerful Message of Global Togetherness Amid a Divisive Inauguration

Starting off with the biggest news of the week, the year and possibly the century – it’s the inauguration of (*pinches self*) President Trump. Obviously some of the rhetoric up to this point has been pretty divisive. Adweek have highlighted an example, courtesy of Expedia, of how important advertising’s role in countering all of this can become. Check it out by clicking on the link above.

The Dallas Cowboys could be the first NFL team to move into the $890 million e-sports industry

Not content with being the most valuable team in the NFL, the Dallas Cowboys look like they’re now moving into the world of gaming – specifically eSports. It’s a growing industry (almost pushing $1bn a year) and could offer them a fantastic means to engage their fans. Will many other sports teams follow suit? Watch this space….

Report: by end of 2017 there will be more than 30MM voice assistants in US homes

Marketing Land outline how approximately 30 million US homes will be using voice assistants by the end of the year. While applications related to this are struggling to gain traction with users right now, things are expected to improve. Have a look at the link above.

Wal-Mart Enters Car-Selling Business

Wal-Mart appear set to take a chunk out of the car-selling market, partnering up with various dealership groups to make the leap.

The global state of fake news in 5 charts

Fake news was one of the major themes of 2016, and continues to own it’s share of (real and fake) headlines going into 2017. Digiday give a breakdown of the state of things.

How marketing and traditional simplicity won the day for Trump

Continuing with Trump’s victory in the presidential campaign, The Drum present a fantastic article on how he leveraged some old-fashioned thinking regarding branding to come out on top. For a lot of people, his was the right brand, with the right message at the right time – and that is always tough to beat. Check out the article via the link above.

Like what you see? Why not sign up for our newsletter to receive updates straight to your inbox!

Get the Newsletter

Reaching fans, in real-time, at the perfect time – getting your sports marketing right

With the mega-event known as Super Bowl LI less than a month away, we thought we’d take a look at some of the ways advertisers can capitalize on live sporting events to capture viewers’ attention and create brand engagement. Some of live TV’s most emotive moments come from seeing the perfect play executed, or watching (jaw on the floor) as your team scores in the dying seconds to emerge triumphant. Sport is full of these highs and lows. And, if you’re an advertiser, these are exactly the kind of rushes of euphoria that brands can make the most of. Or rushes of despair, if you sell pizza and ice-cream.  😛

Putting the fans front and center 

Stadium

All good marketers know that placing your customer at the core of your branding efforts is key. They’re who you want to engage, so you better keep them in mind – and the kind of experience they’re looking for – when building marketing around a sporting event. And viewers are primed for interaction. A recent study conducted by Momentum Worldwide revealed that 86% of sports fans would welcome more sponsorship and marketing centred around their favourite sporting events. However, only 17% of fans feel that brands associated with teams and events actually care about them. This obviously presents a problem for brands trying to reach out – but there are ways to fix this. Marketers should, for one thing, leverage social as best as they can. Enhancing the fans’ overall experience of an event is crucial, and social channels play an important role in this. 58% feel that sharing content and updates makes the whole event more enjoyable, with half loving the content that other fans produce. Brands can create forums to facilitate this, presenting a big opportunity to engage. Fans also love rituals and traditions – 63% cited this as important. Spotting this is something Gatorade played to perfection with their ‘Gatorade Shower’ app. And don’t forget about partying! Hosting viewing parties is a major source of enjoyment for sports fans and something brands can leverage to everybody’s benefit.

TV or not TV? That is the question 

Cameraman

Big live games mean big ratings, something large advertisers are all too aware of. Take the Super Bowl for example. This year a 30-second slot during the game is going to cost a whopping $5 million. It is the single biggest one-off sporting event in the world and the numbers show it – every year they go up. But what if you don’t have that kind of budget, or you do (kudos to you) and you want to supplement your TV spend with some other effective methods of engagement? Below are three ideas on how to tap into the power of live sport without having to rob a bank first.

Hijack the big day out (with real-time viewing data)

‘Conquesting’ & ‘brand piggy-backing’ are two great ways of leveraging the exposure that either a competitor or complementary brand/product gets when they advertise on something as large as the Super Bowl for example (or smaller events too). The basic idea is to sync your own digital advertising with their TV exposure to gain optimal traction with your (shared) target audience. Mercedes showing their TV spot during the main event? Well, if you’ve a car dealership it could make total sense to run digital ads at the same time. This, coupled with the availability of real-time viewing data (i.e. knowing exactly who’s watching said sporting event and how to reach them), means targeting your ads at just the right time is well within any brand’s reach. Sync it to a tent-pole advertising campaign, and surf on the wave of interest that follows.

Buyers ahoy!

‘Telescoping’ (sorry about the pirate reference, hard to resist) can be a super way of building on your TV efforts and further developing the story your marketing is trying to tell about your brand. Essentially this involves an interactive prompt popping up as an overlay on your TV ad. It allows viewers to click on the overlay and view (for instance) a longer, more in-depth version of your ad or description of your product, or click to buy. This can allow you to position shorter commercials around expensive sporting event time-slots, while offering your viewers the opportunity to engage further (at less expense to you). In essence, your TV spend goes further and your story deeper.

Magic moments

What better way to make someone feel great about your brand than getting right in front of them immediately after their team has scored! A combination of audience building (both historical and real-time), live event tracking and digital ads syncing can mean that anytime a fan’s emotions are running wild, you can be there (either to celebrate with them or pick up the pieces – I refer you to my pizza and ice-cream comment above).

Winning the game 

Team celebrating

Live events are a sure-fire way of reaching out to and engaging with fans at the perfect time. Whether you want to capitalize on feel-good moments to help create a positive association with your brand, or you’d like to run concurrent call-to-action ad campaigns to generate leads and sales, there are many ways to use the power of sport to your advantage. So why wait? As the mighty swoosh would say: Just Do It.

Interested in keeping up with the latest trends and news on TV and digital? Why not sign up for our newsletter?

Get the Newsletter
Secured By miniOrange