Higher chance of surviving a plane crash than clicking a banner ad

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Banner adverts are an ineffective way to drive traffic or boost online PR for a brand, it is reported by digital marketing agency TAN Media, looking at new data.

Deeper engagement in the form of content marketing and social media outreach will attract online consumers of the future

The banner ad is so unappealing that it “has become a symbol of all that’s wrong with online advertising”, according to Brian Morrissey in a post for Digiday.com.

Typically it is said to be lacking in creativity, intrusive and ignored by the overwhelming majority of web users.

Despite its major drawbacks it remains a mainstay of the internet, although many publishers are keen for the online marketing world to move away from the banner ad towards more fruitful and engaging options.

Those calling for its demise are citing a raft of data to back up their cause.

Statistics from ComScore suggest that 5.3 trillion display ads were served to US web users last year, which is a rise of one trillion from 2009.

However, research from DoubleClick indicates that click-through rates for banner ads are a paltry 0.1%.

ComScore even estimates that around one in three (31%) ad impressions cannot be viewed by users.

And the aforementioned click-through rates don’t get any more impressive when viewed in the context of ComScore data that suggests 8% of internet users are responsible for 85% of clicks.

Solve Media even goes as far as to say that an individual is more likely to survive a plane crash than click on a banner ad!

Research has been carried out by eMarketer into people’s perceptions of banner ads, with the finding that 15% of people trust banner ads completely or somewhat, whereas the equivalent figure for TV ads is 29%.

The same research suggests that around one in three people (34%) don’t trust banner ads at all or much, compared to one in four (26%) for magazine ads.

They continue to be popular with a number of brands though, as ComScore says that 445 different advertisers delivered more than a billion banner ads in 2012.

Last year, Gawker, the media news and gossip blog, made a significant move away from traditional display ads and said it would work with its advertisers directly to create new content avenues.

In an email to staff, Gawker chief executive Nick Denton said: “We all know the conventional wisdom: the days of the banner advertisement are numbered.

“In two years, our primary offering to marketers will be our discussion platform.”

Managing Director of TAN Media, Adam Rock concludes “Deeper engagement in the form of content marketing and social media outreach will attract online consumers of the future”.

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Adam Knoyle
Tan Media
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