Saturday, 20 October 2012

Dead Air More Effective Than Facebook Ads

Dead Air More Effective Than Facebook Ads

The broadcast industry has a term called "dead air." It occurs when there's a

mistake or a technical glitch that results in no audio on radio, or no picture

on a TV screen. A blank TV screen is "dead air." In an absolutely

astounding experiment, the banner advertising equivalent of dead air -- a blank

display ad -- performed better than the average Facebook ad; twice as good as

the average "branding" display ad; and only one click in ten thousand worse than

the average of all display ads. Here are the details. AdAge this week has a piece called How Blank

 Display Ads Managed to Tot Up Some Impressive Numbers The article was written by Ted

 McConnell, exec VP-digital for the Advertising Research Foundation. Ted and a few friends (an

astrophysicist from an online analytics firm, a measurement expert from the Advertising Research

Foundation, and an ad-platform wizard from a buying and optimization company)

decided to do an experiment. The experiment was designed to discover how much

clicking of banner advertising was actual engagement with the ad, and how much

was just noise -- people clicking for no reason. To do this they created

a unique ad -- an ad with no message. A blank. According to McConnell...

"We created six blank ads in three IAB standard sizes, and two colors, white and orange. We

trafficked the ads via a demand-side platform (DSP) with a low bid. We started with run of

exchange, and in another phase trafficked to "named publishers" that would accept unaudited

copy." Here are the results:

The click-through rate on the blank ads was .08%. According to published

reports, the click-through rate on the average Facebook ad is about .05%. The

blank ad performed 60% better.

The click through rate for the blank ad was about double the average

click-through rate for a "branding" display ad (an ad without an offer.)

The click-through rate on the average banner ad is .09%. This means the

blank ad drew one click in ten thousand fewer than an average banner ad.

About .04% of the clicks were mistakes. Since the average click-through rate

for display ads is .09%, this indicates that it is possible that as much as 44%

of banner ad clicks are mistakes. The astounding thing is that with all

the data Facebook is collecting, all the geniuses we have analyzing display ad

results, all the space-age targeting we are constantly being beaten over the

head with, and all the young creative prodigies lecturing us on the magic of

online advertising, empty ads outperformed our online geniuses.

You simply cannot make this shit up.

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