Many years ago, when banner ads arrived, a new era in digital marketing was born. But today, it’s been said (far too often), you have a higher probability of surviving a plane crash or winning the lottery than clicking a banner ad. This establishes the fact that banner ads are passé now – a phenomenon popularly known as Banner Blindness.
Research has it that the average CTR for display ad formats is approximately 0.2% whereas rich media is slightly better on 0.5%. So, for all those advertisers who burn budgets on banner ads that no one really notices, it's time to step up and fight Banner Blindness. Here's what you should be doing:
1) Ad placement:
Traditionally, the right sidebar or the top of the page were the most common places where ads would chase more visibility. But the following position ensures more engagement and visibility:
- Core content area - Embed ads within content. People are already involved in reading the content so they will view your ad and then continue to complete reading. This guarantees higher CTR's and engagement.
2) Visually appealing ads:
Attract audiences with ads that are visually appealing. Choose colors, fonts, backgrounds that go well with the publisher's page and compliment the overall look and feel of it. Create ads that are:
Include keywords depending upon your audience. Choose ad networks that link your audience to relevant publishers.
3) A Prominent CTA:
If you want visitors to convert, you've got to incentivize them with powerful advertising. A prominent CTA that stands out from the ad works wonders. What to keep in mind:
- A clean layout with a perfectly visible CTA is attractive
- It should convey the benefit of clicking and reflect a sense of urgency
- Declutter. If it's cluttered, it looks very unattractive and hurts the eyes
- Keep in mind the size, shape and color of your CTA button.
Retargeted ads are viewed by 3 out of 4 customers. Benefits:
- Average CTR for retargeted ads is 0.7%
- They can be done at an extremely low cost
- Works fabulously for brand recall
While you focus on retargeting, ensure you stop targeting consumers who have already seen your ad a considerable number of times. It's best to set a frequency cap on your ad so viewers don't feel annoyed or intruded with your ad.
All in all, the key to a successful campaign is an open mind that's willing to experiment. Banners are ads that help advertisers and publishers spread the word about their products and their sites. The best way to beat banner blindness is by getting creative, experimental and by providing valuable information about products and services that consumers may or may not be aware of. Focus on the requirements of your consumers. After all, advertising is all about them...not about you!