Where Does Display Advertising Belong in Your Marketing?
Mike Norris: Hey everybody, Happy Wednesday! It’s Mike here, and I’ve got Bernadette from Bannersnack with me today and we’re going to talk a little bit about display advertising and how it fits into your overall marketing mix. So, before we do that though- I’d like to introduce Bernadette. Bernadette, do you want to say a little bit about yourself, Bannersnack, and what it is you guys do over there?
Bernadette: Sure, hi! I have been working at Bannersnack for four years. One of my everyday tasks as the PPC specialist is to optimize the various advertising campaigns on Google, Facebook, and other social media platforms- also to analyze app performance.
I’d be happy to share with you some tips and tricks about display ads!
Mike: Alright, perfect! For those of you who don’t know, Bannersnack is a platform that makes it really, really easy to create display advertisements and HTML advertisements, as well- which we use quite a bit here.
So let’s start off by talking about that a little bit.
Where do you see display ads fitting into someone’s overall marketing mix?
Bernadette: Display advertising is a method of attracting the audience to the backside of the social media platform or other digital mediums to take a specific action. These are often made up of text-based media or video advertisements that encourage the user to click to a landing page and make a connection – for example, to make a purchase.
So whatever your goal is, brand building or to generate leads- display ads can help you with that! These display ads can also be used in retargeting campaigns. This is where ads are served to users who have already visited your site. The goal is to retarget them and encourage them to return to your website and make connections. For example, make a purchase.
Mike: Retargeting ads always get me! I’ll be looking at shoes or something like that- then I go on Instagram or something similar and- boom! There they are. And I’m a sucker, I always purchase.
Bernadette: I just wanted to say that I like search ad displays, search ad displays are not searchers who are actively looking for something, searching for something- it’s that we take those display ads into social feeds or informational sites with the hopes that they’ll distract you from the current activity and also encourage them to click through to our website. I think restarting the users from their intended activity isn’t enough of a challenge, we are also competing with other display ads so it’s kind of hard sometimes-
Mike: Yeah, yeah- that is a good point. You know, I think they work well in tandem with search because in search, you’re meeting people at that moment where they are looking. But, if they’ve already seen your display ads and heard about you, that increases the chance that they’re gonna go with you when they’re in that moment.
What would you say makes a display ad effective?
With all that in mind- What would you say makes a display ad effective? I think, you know, I’ve seen some display ads that are amazing! You know, I see them and I’m like, “Wow, how do they even do that?,” then I’ve seen some other ones, I’m just like, “ok, yeah,”- I don’t really remember them at all.
Bernadette: Yeah, there are several tips and tricks, some best practices, for making effective display ads. For example, it is very important to use the right language. I mean, display advertising allows you to target specific customer segments. This means you should speak to each of those groups independently and not as if they were one and the same. Another good, best practice, is to use numbers in your copy.
Bernadette: Numbers are easy to understand, so this is the key when you want to grab attention. Uce facts, use numbers, and provide social tools to encourage users to click on your ads.
Mike: Sure, yeah, that makes a lot of sense!
Bernadette: Yeah! Also, it’s important to use compelling call to actions, but taking into consideration the funnel stage. For example, if we are talking about brand awareness- use soft call to action. For example, “discover.” For consideration, it’s best to use call to actions like, “download,” or, “find out more, “ but in the case of targeting companies you can use the typical call to actions like, “Buy Now,” or “Call Now.” Also, I think it is very important- the message of the ad, because it must match the copy on your landing page. This should include the headlines and the call to actions too. The journey from the ad must be continued on the landing page. And the overall design of the display ad from the color scheme to the – ads, should match the landing page.
Mike: That’s all really good advice, I think! And, I think a lot of times we’ve seen people get caught up in where their display ad- maybe it doesn’t really have a clear message, or if it’s meant for awareness and they’re getting it out to people- and it’s a great looking ad but it doesn’t really explain what they’re selling, or what they’re doing, or anything like that.
Then sometimes, we just see that they don’t align, you know? People might run a display out and then send people to their homepage, and their homepage has a lot of different things going on and It’s just not perfect.
So, I think that’s all really good advice- and then, understanding the funnel stage is important too, for sure.
How Has Display Advertising Changed?
Mike: So I know you said you’ve been at Bannerstack for four years
How would you say display advertising has changed over that time period? Or even before that?
Bernadette: Banner ads have been around for a very long time, for example the very first banner ad was made in 1994.
Mike: Oh, wow! I was just a kid!
Bernadette: Me too! But that doesn’t mean that we solved all of the display problems- because they have lower click-through rates than text ads, it also can be very hard to plan different sizes, or different placements for different devices. Historically, if you wanted to create something dynamic, you were limited to the clunky and non-secure flash elements. I think, in 2016, Google announced that display ads would be served in HTML5 format.
And, the flash ads would be discontinued. This announcement was met with a little bit of concern- mostly from the campaign managers. Because, they found it very hard to create HTML5 ads, code-based HTML5 ads. But luckily, nowadays, you don’t have to be a full site developer to create HTML5 ads.
Mike: Yeah! Thankfully!
Bernadette: Yeah! And nowadays, HTML5 ads are easy to create, they have shown to increase click-through rates substantially when compared to static banners. They are more attractive, more engaging, they run perfectly.
For example, with native ads, and be created to display responsively in all placements.
Mike: Yeah, excellent. And for those people watching this who don’t really know- an HTML5 ad, it’s going to have some type of animation to it. So, maybe the words come in from the side or maybe you’ve got- let’s say you’re selling cars- you have a car drive-in. You know, things of that nature.
Are There Ad Sizes that Work Better Than Others?
Mike: Would you say there are any ad sizes that work well over others, Bernadette?
Bernadette: Yes, there are. The most effective display ads are the 300×250- this is the medium rectangle ad. (not sure what she says next- 9:01). The medium rectangle is 40% of the global inventory, and the reason it’s so popular is because it works well on both mobile and desktop.
Other well-performing sizes are the 336×280- it’s also a rectangle ad, the 300×600 half page ad- of course the 728×90. This is also called the ‘horizontal banner,’ and this is the second most common ad size within our global inventory with 25% of global impressions. So, it’s huge too. This ad combining with the medium rectangular and the mobile leaderboard should cover most of the display needs.
Mike: Thanks! Ok, so if someone was just getting started and they were unsure of which sizes to create, they’d probably be pretty covered if they went with the ones you mentioned-
Mike: Okay – Is there anything else we should know about display advertising?
Bernadette: Display advertising provides many benefits that other marketing channels do not- such as; faster brand building, real-time commercial measuring, or effective targeting. Using display ads is a very effective method to reaching your goals. Like I said, it depends, if you want to build a brand or use them for brand awareness. If you are generating leads, if you just want to use them for retargeting campaigns- they work well.
But, like all paid marketing reports, it’s about targeting right.
Mike: That makes a lot of sense too. And like you said it’s very important with lining where people are in the funnel with the ad itself and then again to the landing page. I just want to reiterate that for everyone because that is absolutely crucial if you’re gonna do a good job with this.
Alright, well thank you, Bernadette! I appreciate your time today. This was very helpful and I’m sure all of our listeners here have a definite better understanding of display ads then they did when they came in! I really appreciate you – love Bannersnack! Thank you so much!
Bernadette: Thank you so much for having us!
Mike: Thanks, everyone! see you next Wednesday!