In the beginning years of the internet the only option for internet marketing were text ads, with limited character space, which gave little room for expressing a message. Today, businesses have a myriad of options from banner ads, to rich media ads and becoming even more prevalent, video ads. This is definitely a plus in a world where a picture is worth a thousand words.
Let’s talk about banner ads. Banner ads come in many different forms and sizes. They can be jpegs, gifs and for the truly advanced they can be done in flash, which is a form of rich media. A static jpeg or gif banner ad allows a business to include more detailed information about their business and/or product and present it to a potential consumer. A perfect example would be one of our convention center clients. When they were advertising for an upcoming convention it was quite a task to fit the date, location, call to action and a price offer in a text ad, while making it eye catchy. However, static banner ads came to the rescue. We created banner ads that included all the above and made it eye catchy. The client received more response from the banner ads than the text ads that were created for them. The next step up after a static jpeg or gif banner ad is a flash ad.
Flash banner ads allow consumers to interact with them. A couple examples would be mini animated videos with a call to action at the end, as well as ads that request information and give a result. An example of the mini animated video would be an ad that we created for an orthodontist client. The client is offering a discount on children’s braces during the Christmas season. A 30 second flash ad was created showing a snowman with crooked teeth; we added some “sparkle” to his holiday and magically he received straight teeth with braces. The end of the animation offers a discount on braces.
Another example of flash banners is an ad that I came across with my colleagues. Dunkin Donuts has an ad that asks you to put in your zip code. Upon receipt of your zip code the ad tells you the breakfast deal at the nearest Dunkin Donuts, along with an image of a delicious bagel and a hot cup of coffee for only $0.99. This ad was very effective, seeing that my co-workers wanted to go for a walk to the Dunkin Donuts across the street.
Another way to grab a consumer’s attention is through video ads. A business can place video ads on their site or they can advertise on a website like YouTube. According to Wikipedia, YouTube “is a video sharing website where users can upload, view and share video clips.” One side note, if you’re going to advertise on YouTube you ought to be creative. According to Google, regular ads don’t cut through the clutter because people are looking to be entertained.
Now that you know a picture is worth a thousand words and a good investment, go experiment.