Everything you need to know about display based advertising. Browse our most recent news stories and expert columns on trends in display advertising, including banner ads, pre-roll video ads, retargeting and remarketing. Refer to our library of How To Guides for marketers employing display advertising campaigns to make an impact with consumers online.

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Premarketing: The Evolution Of Targeting

cocacola Nothing has evolved more in online marketing than the way we identify and target users. Just a few years ago, segmentation of publishers into categories or channels was still cutting edge. The "cast-a-wide net and pare down" mantra of the display networks thankfully progressed into one of the first truly effective forms of targeting -- contextual relevance -- where ad servers began to recognize text on a page and serve "relevant" ads to the user. But it took remarketing for display to become relevant for direct response advertising. Unlike its predecessors, remarketing doesn't take much wor [...]


Mozilla’s Firefox To Show Sponsored Content “Tiles” To New Users

firefox-logo-wordmark-vertical Mozilla will soon begin to show sponsored content on Firefox when new users open up the New Tab page in the browser. When users begin to use Firefox, their "Directory Tiles" -- the nine boxes that appear on the New Tab page -- are mostly empty before populating over time with the most frequent and recent websites users visit. With this move, Directory Tiles will populate with pre-packaged content for first-time users. [caption id="attachment_73903" align="aligncenter" width="600"] The current Directory Tiles view for new Firefox users. Firefox plans to auto-populate all nine tiles with a [...]


Google’s ComScore Deal Bakes Brand Ad Measurement Into DoubleClick

Google Logo - basic featured Google's latest deal with comScore will give the current leader in display advertising a bigger hook for luring the brand advertising budgets it's been going after. The comScore partnership will give brands the ability to measure their desktop display and video campaigns in real time using the reach and frequency metrics they're accustomed to using in TV buys. The technology will be integrated into DoubleClick, Google's ad server for advertisers and publishers. Google has been working on its own measurement technology, Active View, but the industry has been calling on the company to integra [...]


Beyond SEM: When You’ve Maxed Your Search Ads, What’s Next?

brick-wall-300x187 Advertisers frequently tell me, “If you can hit my CPA target, my SEM budget is unlimited!” This is great in theory but often limited in practice — at some point, there simply are no more new keywords, or landing page tweaks, or ad text tests that can increase an advertiser’s SEM spend. Two years ago, maxing out on SEM resulted in a virtual dead-end for online marketing growth simply because other channels could not come close to the CPAs achievable in SEM. Today, the landscape of profitable online marketing channels goes beyond SEM and is expanding daily. In this article, I’d [...]


FBX Advertisers Spent More, Saw Conversion Costs Drop 18 Percent YoY This Holiday Season

fbx Facebook's ad retargeting platform Facebook Exchange continued to attract larger budgets from advertisers over the holiday shopping season.  According to new data from Facebook Exchange DSP, Triggit, advertisers spent 127 percent more on spend on Facebook Exchange (FBX) ads in November and December 2013 than the same period in 2012. Though average CPMs shot up 42 percent year-over-year, advertisers benefited from 58 percent higher click-through rates (CTR) and 18 percent lower cost per conversion compared to the 2012 holiday period. The retail vertical spent 64 percent more on FBX adver [...]


Au Contraire, Ad Contrarian: In Defense Of Digital Advertising

Ad-Contrarian-Book-Cover-New Bob Hoffman is an advertising legend -- a seasoned ad executive who has gained a reputation as one of the most influential advertising bloggers. His books, The Ad Contrarian and 101 Contrarian Ideas About Advertising, top the Amazon bestseller list for advertising. Most of the time, I find myself whole-heartedly agreeing with his terse tweets and bellicose blog posts. Until now. In his recent blog post, "Product Advertising and The Super Bowl," Hoffman basically blames the collective creative "meh" that was Super Bowl advertising this year on digital advertising. In his view, the adve [...]


WTF Is A Cookie, Anyway? Do You Really Know, Or Just Think You Do?

Cookies [Editor's note: This column has been corrected to fix errors that weren't caught in the initial editing process. Thanks to those who pointed them out.] This month's column was inspired by a very brave CMO who bluntly asked, during a recent conversation, "WTF is a cookie, anyway?" This particular gent is smart -- he controls a marketing budget of over $30m a year, a reasonable enough portion of which is digital. His question stems from the many ways our industry talks about cookies (often incorrectly) and the peripheral terms than have become synonymous -- RTB, big data, programmatic, [...]


Federated Media Sells Content Marketing Business To Focus On Programmatic

sovrn_black Media-seller Federated Media Publishing, which began in 2005 with big native advertising ambitions for independent bloggers, has given up that mission to focus on programmatic media. The company is selling its content marketing business to LIN Media, and is re-branding what remains, founded on FM’s acquisition of Lijit in 2011, as sovrn holdings. Federated Media will become a business within Austin-based LIN Media’s Digital unit, and will be headed by general manager Chris Eberle, who comes to Lin Media with the FM acquisition. LIN was formed in the 60s in the radio space as L [...]


Creating & Iterating Today: The Marriage Of Tech & Imagination

internet-online-marketing-featured In our industry, we acknowledge the longstanding rub between the quant and the qual. We know that the math and the creative imagination have had their struggles to co-exist. But it's become a bit of a false or dated construct. It's a fun debate, sure, but the either/or conclusion cannot be supported any longer.  Most of us believe that math has changed marketing for good. Further, we see that automated, applied math or data analytics has radically, specifically changed digital marketing. Yet, the focus for some time has been on what analytics has changed as far as the media execution: whe [...]


Online Display Ad Spending Up 32 Percent In 2013, Still Just 4.5 Percent Of $243 Billion Market [Nielsen]

nielsen-logo-300px Nielsen's latest quarterly look at the global advertising market is out, and the report shows internet display advertising grew by more than 32 percent in the first three quarters of 2013. That makes online display advertising the fastest growing advertising media. That said, it remains the smallest with just 4.5 percent market share. TV advertising remains the number one channel, by far. TV ad spend actually increased 4.3 percent through Q3 to hold 57.6 percent share. Nielsen notes that even in Europe, which has seen advertisers spending less overall for several quarters, TV ad spend was f [...]


The Third Team: 1/4 Watch Super Bowl For Ads; 81% See Them As Entertainment

Super_Bowl_XLVIII_logo The National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights released survey (PDF) data mostly focused on anticipated consumer spending on Super Bowl parties and related areas (i.e., new TVs, furniture). The survey also asked about interest in the commercials, which turn out to be a "third team" that people are tuning in for. The Third Team Unlike other recent surveys that have shown greater interest in the ads than in the game, the NRF survey reported that 47.5 percent of the 6,417 respondents were most interested in the action on the field. That was followed by 25 percent who said "the comm [...]


Google Rolls Out “AdSense Direct” For Publishers To Manage Direct Ad Sales

Google AdSense Logo Google announced the roll out of AdSense Direct today to allow publishers to implement campaigns for ads they sell direct to advertisers through the AdSense system, with no code changes. Google has also published step-by-step set-up instructions. After securing a direct ad deal with an advertiser, the publisher sets up the campaign in AdSense and sends the advertiser the custom link to upload the ad. One potential drawback, is that payments go through Google Wallet, and are paid out through regular AdSense installments. Advertisers won't be able to set up separate payment plans for direc [...]


Google Remarketing Ads Broke Canada Privacy Laws, Concedes To Revamp Ad Review System

Google legal Canada’s Office of the Privacy Commissioner has found Google in violation of Canada’s privacy rights for the use of sensitive health history in remarketing campaigns. The finding comes after an investigation spurred by a Canadian man who complained that his private health information was being used by Google to retarget him with ads for sleeep apnea devices after he visited sites with information about those devices. In the process of the investigation, Canada's privacy watchdog also found Google's automated ad review system to have "demonstrable shortcomings". As a result, Google has a [...]


Google Launches WordPress Plugin For AdSense And Webmaster Tools

Google AdSense Logo Google has released a new plugin for publishers using WordPress. The official Google Publisher Plugin offers support for Google AdSense and Google Webmaster Tools, with more services likely to be added in the future. This is a beta release, so as an early adopter, you're also a test case. Google said in the release announcement, "We’re still fine-tuning the plugin to make sure it works well on the many WordPress sites out there. We’d love for you to try it now and share your feedback on how it works for your site." By allowing publishers to link their WordPress sites to their AdS [...]


Old Guard Industries Now Driving Growth In B2B Online Advertising

For the first time, established industries such as financial services and manufacturing are fueling the growth in real-time bidding in the B2B sector. While software and technology companies have been on the leading edge of adopting new marketing and advertising technologies, the financial services and manufacturing industries caught up last year. That's according to new research from DemandBase, an automation and targeting platform for B2B companies, that looked at activity from B2B marketers in over 20 verticals using the platform in 2013. [caption id="attachment_70039" align="alignrig [...]


Unlocking The Tremendous Possibilities Of Audience Data

Maximize Return on Your Investment Arrow Matrix I don't think it's news to anyone that there is more readily-available audience data than ever before. "From the dawn of civilization until 2003, humankind generated five exabytes of data. Now we produce five exabytes every two days… and the pace is accelerating." - Eric Schmidt, Executive Chairman, Google In fact, according to Rick Smolan and Jennifer Erwitt in the book, The Human Face of Big Data, the average person today processes more data in a single day than a person in the 1500s did in an entire lifetime. In the world of advertising, this data comes from many sources, including onli [...]


Yahoo Aims To Simplify Ad Buys With “Yahoo Advertising,” Brings Tumblr Into The Fold

yahoo-featured Yahoo announced several new advertiser initiatives during CEO Marissa Mayer's keynote at CES in Las Vegas today. The company is putting an umbrella over its disparate ad formats and buying gateways called "Yahoo Advertising." The aim is to give media buyers and advertisers closer to a one-stop-shop for Yahoo ad inventory to make buying Yahoo ads more appealing. The ad platform is backed by Yahoo's user data and analytics tools for audience targeting and performance analysis. Yahoo's favorite ad buzzword these days is "native advertising," and Mayer announced more native advertising opportunit [...]


Yahoo Ad Network Charged With Distributing Malware To Millions Of Users Outside Of US

yahoo-y-logo-2013 According to a report this weekend on Washington Post's technology blog The Switch, two Netherland internet security firms revealed that Yahoo's advertising servers were inadvertently distributing malware. According to a statement from a Yahoo spokesperson sent to the Washington Post: At Yahoo, we take the safety and privacy of our users seriously. We recently identified an ad designed to spread malware to some of our users. We immediately removed it and will continue to monitor and block any ads being used for this activity. The statement from Yahoo prompted a follow-up report by the Wa [...]


Creating Fatigue-Proof Retargeting Ads

ads Web surfers aren't going to engage with the same dreary creative displayed over and over again. This makes it key to vary your message, pursue a theme, or even tell a story with multiple creative units, especially if impression frequency per user is more than a couple times a day. As there are many elements to consider, it will likely take a few attempts and/or iterations before finding winning ads. In this article, I'll provide several pointers on how to create fatigue-proof ad creative. 1. Use Relevant Keywords And/Or Relevant Themes This point seems obvious but is often overlooked. Con [...]


Programmatic Dominates Our Top 10 Display Advertising Columns For 2013

ml_disp_adv What was on the minds of Display Advertisers in 2013? RTB? DSPs? DMPs? Indeed, it was all of these acronyms, which you can clearly see from looking at our list of top 10 columns for the year. (By the way, those stand for real-time bidding, demand-side platforms and data management platforms -- all aspects of the increasingly popular programmatic media buying landscape.) Our generous contributor Ratko Vidakovic hit it out of the park with a guide to moving beyond AdWords to Demand-Side Platforms, and with so many other columns covering this emerging area of the display ad landscape. Thanks [...]


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