You know those adverts you see all over the Internet? Some are banners, whilst others are text-based or use videos. This is called Display Advertising. Think of Display Advertising as the digital version of a billboard, print ad, or TV advert you see offline. Businesses pay whoever owns the ad space, hoping to get their ads seen by the right kinds of people, and then turn those people into customers. In the online world of Display Advertising, ad space isn't on billboards or TV channels, but on the websites, we visit.
Display Advertising gives businesses the chance to pay for their ads to appear when the right kind of person is on the right kind of page. And there are lots of ways to do this.
• You can make deals directly with the owners of a website.
• You can use networks to match businesses with lots of different websites that have ad space to sell.
• You can decide to show your ads on specific web pages or to specific groups of people, or even both.
Let's imagine you're passionate about films, so you've created a Podcast where you do film reviews. Now you want to market it. Think about the people who might be interested in a film review podcast and what else they might be looking at online, like cinema websites, official movie sites, or film forums. The pages where your customers are, are also where you should be. Of course, your customers won't always be looking at websites about film. With Display Advertising, you can get your ads in front of them when they're browsing other things.
So, you can target people with specific interests, like film, they're checking the weather or reading the news, perhaps they're visiting blogs and browsing around all other sorts of websites they might want to visit, even if those websites have nothing to do with film.
So, display advertising offers businesses the ability to reach relevant audiences all across the Internet. It's actually quite amazing, and it's one reason why Display Advertising is a great way to build awareness of you and your business.
For example, if you've just created your film review podcast, you'll need to make people aware that your new product exists. With display advert, you can get noticed by just the people you want to reach. But Display Advertising isn't only about getting your name out there. Display is also a great way to drive traffic to your website, build engagement with your visitors, and win new customers. How?
Well, you might choose to show adverts to people who have visited your website but who haven't yet subscribed to the podcast. So, as they browse the news, check the weather, or watch videos, your Display Advertising can remind them to subscribe with a special incentive or promotion customized for them. This is called Retargeting.
The different components that make Display Advertising work, including how you'll find and target the right audience, how you'll build your adverts, and how you'll organize your campaigns are:
First, you're probably going to be using a Display Advertising network; that is, a system that lets you advertise on many different websites, to help you build and run
your display campaigns. And almost all of them will allow you to decide where your adverts will show up and who will see them.
Like all Digital Display Advertising platforms offer many targeting options. You can limit your ads to people who speak certain languages or to certain days or times. You can even combine multiple things together. So, let's take a look at some targeting options that are unique to display adverts.
For example, you can really zero in on where you want to be advertising by defining specific websites, individual pages on those websites, and even specific areas on those individual pages that you want your adverts to appear on. These are known as 'Placements'. The idea here is that you know the kind of sites your target audience is likely to be visiting, and you can get your ads in front of them by targeting the exact placements you want, or you can aim for a broader audience.
If we take our example of a film review podcast, you could decide to show your adverts on any website that fits into general high-level topics like cinema or art, instead of targeting specific websites. You can even target specific groups of people and even the things they do online, regardless of the sites they're browsing. Depending on what options your ad network offers, you might be able to target by gender or age group, or by very specific locations, such as people who are located on a university campus, for example. You can even target people who have demonstrated an interest in film, based on the kinds of websites that they have visited in the past. Finding the right audience is essential, but your display campaign also needs actual adverts to show them.
There's no reason why you can't use many different kinds of adverts. In fact, you'll be maximizing all the potential places where your adverts might appear. Just remember, you'll want to match the content with the audience you are targeting. So, you're probably seeing how to accomplish your different advertising goals using many different combinations of audiences and adverts, and you're probably also realising just how important it is to keep things organized. That's why nearly all Display Advertising solutions allow you to keep things under control by creating and managing what are known as 'Campaigns'.
You could have one display campaign aimed at indie film fans with adverts featuring your interviews with up-and-coming directors. At the same time, another campaign could be dedicated to everyday moviegoers. These adverts might target cinema sites or film review sites. They could run on specific days of the week, like Fridays and Saturdays when people are going out to the movies. The message could be different as well, perhaps suggesting people come to decide which films to watch this weekend.
Display advertising can be used to target very specific audiences and even multiple audiences at the same time, depending on the message you want to send. Thinking about who you want to reach and what you want to tell them will not only keep your campaigns organized, it will also help you figure out the message, the tone, the style your Display Advertising should take. Understanding how these things work together will help you match the right message with the right people, and you'll be well on your way.
If display advertising sounds like something that might be interesting to you, before you start, it's important to understand what display does well, and decide what your goals are. This could not only help you set the right expectations it could also help you focus and get the biggest benefit for your business.
So, what are you hoping to do with Display Advertising? Get your name out to people who might not know about you? Tell existing customers something new about your business? Bring customers back, again and again?
You can use Display Advertising to do all these things. But it helps to decide what makes sense for you and then build your Display Advertising campaigns around those goals. If you have lots of goals, a single ad or a single campaign can't do it all. But don't worry, if you clearly lay out what you want to achieve upfront, you can then build out different adverts targeting different people for all the right reasons.
A simple way to break down what you want to achieve with Display Advertising is to think about the different steps of the customer journey as a funnel.
(1) The widest part at the top is AWARENESS. Let's go back to our film podcast example. Before you can turn people into subscribers, they need to know that you're there. Display Advertising can help you here, giving you a way to reach a broad target audience. So, if building awareness of your business is a goal, you'll want to target a broad audience and use adverts to make a great first impression. This is a good time to think about what might catch someone's attention. Remember, they're not actively searching for you when your adverts show up.
Is your film podcast the most popular one online? Do you feature exclusive interviews with the best directors? These could be great attention getters. You can even consider giving film fans a taste of your brilliant content in a rich media video advert.
(2) The next stage in the funnel is all about SHAPING PEOPLE'S OPINIONS of you and making sure that they remember you in the future when they want what you're selling. So, if this is one of your goals, you can create new Display Advertising campaigns that use messaging to reinforce your competitive advantages and really highlight the benefit of whatever product or service you offer. At this point you might narrow down your audience a bit more to include people who've been to your site before. Or maybe people who are really interested in the products and services you offer.
(3) Next on the sales funnel is to FOCUS ON PEOPLE who are already considering the solution you offer. Here you might really refine your message, zeroing in on what exactly makes your product or service so great. So, for your film podcast you could talk about how many subscribers you have or use testimonials from happy customers. Remember, you won't be targeting everyone with this message. These adverts will be targeted to people who you know have been looking into you.
(4) The last step in the sales funnel is the PURCHASE. If your ultimate goal is to get people to become paying customers you need to focus on conversion. For example, you can use adverts with special offers or incentives targeted at people who you know have shown interest in your podcast but who haven't become subscribers. 'Retargeting' is especially useful at this point.
Remember, you want to target people that you know have been researching you online and get them to consider you and eventually convert. Well, Retargeting is a way to accomplish that. It lets you show adverts to people after they visit your website or do specific things that indicate their interest. Say someone visited your podcast website after spotting an ad. Looked through some pages and even made it all the way through to the subscription page, but didn't quite make that final leap. With retargeting campaigns you can define these near misses as your target audience, then you can show this specific audience adverts to help entice them back to your website. This time they might visit your site and finish that subscription form. Just like that you've got yourself a new customer.
Defining exactly what you want to get out of your display advertising will help you create campaigns that are focused on your different business goals. So, whether you want more people to know about your business or you'd like to turn more visitors into paying customers, Display Advertising can help.
Now, you might want to start thinking about where you want your ads to appear? How do you find the websites with advertising space to sell, and how do you connect with them? Well, that's where Display Advertising networks come in. Display Advertising networks are like a middleman connecting businesses who want to advertise with websites with ad space to sell.
Now let's find out how they can help your business find and advertise on the right websites for you.
Let's go back to our film review podcast. Say you found a specific website you wanted to advertise your podcast on. Well, you have a few options here.
(1) First, you could contact the site directly to work out the details, and that's certainly something that happens. But with all the websites out there that offer advertising opportunities you can imagine that this could get pretty time-consuming. This is where Display Advertising networks come in. They handle both the buying and the selling of display ads, linking businesses to websites that want to sell advertising space.
(2) Another way to think of it is as a marketplace that brings businesses and websites together, helping manage the transactions. There are quite a few of these networks out there like Google Display Network or Yahoo, and they all offer different features, but there's a few things most of them have in common.
First and foremost they all offer businesses looking to advertise ad space on the websites. Websites that offer these ad spaces can become part of these networks, and they can do things like, set minimum prices for how much money they expect for showing ads. Your business can then bid for the spots you want throughout the websites in that network, deciding how much you're willing to pay.
Buyers and sellers are connected every single time pages are loaded and the ads that win the right to fill the ad spot are shown. Of course, each network has its own rules, its own features and its own processes and bidding systems. But the key is that they all match buyers and sellers to fill available ad spots. Networks can also help you target specific audiences through two main routes --
• The topics of the web pages where the ad appears.
• The general information about the people viewing the content.
Whilst the exact criteria you can use to find your audience, or the way you actually go about running your campaign, could vary from network to network, Targeting is essential to get your ads in front of the right people.
(3) Another thing that works do is handle the money involved. Buying and selling ads happens every second of every day and the networks collect money from businesses and pay the websites that show the ads.
(4) Finally, and perhaps most importantly, advertising networks collect and share data with businesses. They can tell you how many times your ads are shown, how many times they're clicked on, how much they cost you, and where they've been showing up, and how all this varies between websites and audiences you've been targeting. Many networks even let you add tracking to your webpages so you can see if your ads are resulting in conversions on your website. If you want to use Display Advertising to promote your business across the web, advertising networks are a great place to start because:
• They'll bring you together with the websites that want to sell you ad space.
• They'll let you decide where your ads will be seen and who will see them.
• They'll manage the money for everyone involved.
• They'll even provide you with the data you need to know how well your campaign is getting on.
One really powerful type of Display Advertising is called 'Retargeting', and lets you use what people do on your website in order to target them with a specific advertising message, even after they've left.
Let's use our example of a film review podcast once more. A potential customer comes across your website searching for something new to listen to on their morning commute. They're interested and start to subscribe, but halfway through filling out the subscription form they're suddenly distracted by a phone call. So they leave your site before hitting subscribe. While you're probably glad they visited your website, you'd be happier if they had finished subscribing. They might forget about your podcast or find something else to subscribe to instead. Here's where retargeting comes in.
(1) Your first step in Retargeting is to DEFINE YOUR TARGET AUDIENCE. There are lots of retargeting solutions out there to choose from and many display networks offer this feature as well. But no matter which you use your first step needs to be defining who your target audience is. So, you could define your target audience as people who started to fill out the subscription form but didn't complete it.
Your retargeting service might need you to add a little code to your web pages, or integrate it into your web analytics tool, so it can start collecting a list of people from your website who match this criteria. Again, this won't be a list of individual people with any personal information, such as names or email addresses. Instead, it's an anonymous list, often called a 'Retargeting List'. This is of users who match your criteria who can then be retargeted with ads. So now you've defined an audience, any visitors who start to subscribe, but who don't finish, will be added to the list.
(2) Now it's time to CREATE ADS specifically for them. These ads can be pretty focused because you know everyone seeing them has already started to subscribe on your website. So you might include things like special offers for extra content, a free gift for signing up, or some other incentive that's aimed at getting them back and finishing subscribing. With a campaign set up to show ads to people on the retargeting list, you can now reach potential customers, even after they've left your site. So, later on, they might see one of your ads, click on it, and finish signing up. Once they've subscribed there's no need to show them ads with subscription incentives anymore. So, you might want to create a new retargeting list for current subscribers. Then you can target them with a different ad campaign, perhaps convincing them to come back and explore other podcasts on offer.
So that's how retargeting works. It tracks what people do on your website, and then creates an audience based on their actions, letting advertisers design specific ads for people who have or haven't done specific things.
(2) FLOATING ADVERTS: You can see it in a layer over the content in the same window. The user typically closes it. It is also highly recommended to put a prominent close button at the top right-hand corner of your advert. You can use DHTML or flash to create this type of ad. It's only there for some time.
(3) WALLPAPER ADVERTS: You can see this type of ad in the background of a website where it creates change. There are instances when this type of advert is clickable, but most of the time, they are not. The effect of wallpaper adverts is not highly measurable since there is no click-through. It is principally made for branding.
(4) INTERSTITIAL BANNERS: These are usually in the middle of the pages on a website. Usually, you can see this right before the next page as you click from one page to another. The advert can be closed sometimes.
(5) POP-UPS AND POP-UNDERS: These are adverts that pop up or under as the web page is being viewed. Usually, when you click a pop-up ad, it will redirect you to a new browser window. Instantly, you will notice an advertisement or a notification pop-up. However, it will be apprehensive of a pop-under only after you shut down your browser window.
(7) MAP ADVERTS: These are placed on online maps like Google Maps. This is fitting for local businesses. Usually, it is based on keyword searches that are used for what the brand is offering.
(1) FLAT RATE OR SPONSORSHIPS: Lower-traffic website owners sometimes choose to market or auction banner space at a flat rate. This means that there is a fixed cost per month, no matter the amount of traffic or impressions. This is optimal for media buyers who may be experimenting with an online campaign that specifically aims towards niche markets.
(2) COST PER MILESTONE (CPM): Here, the advertiser has to pay for every 1000th time the advert loads on the website. When an interested party clicks an advertisement, the advertiser will pay. Regardless of how many times the ad is viewed, the advertiser will only pay for the click. This is called Cost-Per-Click.
(3) COST PE4 ACQUISITION (CPA): Means an advertiser will pay only when a user does the desired action or delivers an acquisition. The action may be to buy, subscribe, or follow.
(4) COST PER ENGAGEMENT (CPE): The advertisers will pay for whatever interaction they want with the advert. These are usually placed in video applications like Facebook apps. An interaction or an engagement starts with a rollover that expands the ad. Then, it may have a video, game, form, or other interactive content. This ad will not let the user leave the web page. The best part is, advertisers are only required to pay after the customer completes the desired action.
There are also a variety of options to choose from when it comes to finding and paying for an ad space. All of these are simple enough. The trick is strategizing on which space your ads will get the most activity.
(1) PREMIUM BOOKED MEDIA works in a classic way of booking an ad. Here the advertiser contacts the premium media provider to discuss options.
(2) ADVERTISING EXCHANGES is where publishers put and sold advertising space open for bidding. They also call this inventory.
(3) ADVERTISING NETWORKS refers to a group of websites where marketers can purchase ad spaces using single sales entities.
(4) SOCIAL MEDIA ADVERTISING is a great way to put your ads out there. Why not, right! Billions of people go online every day to get on social media. This is why social media platforms offer advertising spaces for marketers. Most of their revenue comes from ads.
(5) MOBILE ADVERTISING include blind networks, premium line networks and premium networks.
(6) AD SERVERS are servers that simply accumulate ads. This is also where they serve them to web pages. Ad servers can offer advertisers -- frequency capping, sequencing, exclusivity and roadblocks.