Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ad Innovation and the Joy of Product Market Fit

In June 2010, Eric Schmidt noted that future display ads "...would be mini-Web pages. That means they could allow users to watch a video, leave a comment and see real-time content updates..."

The article below highlights how we do exactly that. 

The key is allowing rich media to both morph into app-like ads, while allowing it to scale through a powerful platform.

Who needs a website? Enter the nanosite ad unit

Rich media ads continue to evolve, effectively becoming mini-websites in a box.  Tech publisher IDG and developer Widgetbox have teamed to create a new “nanosite” ad unit that can include video, real-time content, social media and other interactive elements.
The Nanosite Ad Unit, announced today, basically turns an ad into a microsite, housing multiple, clickable assets.  A sample unit that IDG and Widgetbox created (shown at right) includes a branded white paper, a video, case studies and editorial content from IDG publications such as CIO. In a press release, the companies claim the nanosite unit “can dramatically increase brand engagement, brand recall and purchase intent relative to traditional display advertising.”
The nanosite unit is the latest in a number of display advertising types that are adding more functionality and interactivity as advertisers seek better ways to engage website visitors and publishers look for ways to boost digital revenues.
Increasingly, these ads blur the lines between branded and editorial content. AOL’s Project Devil, for example, can include a mix of what AOL CEO Tim Armstrong calls “real content.”
For their nanosite offering, IDG and Widgetbox will collaborate on the creative direction for campaigns, design the ad, and provide the underlying technology and metrics for the campaigns, which IDG will sell across its brands, which include Computerworld, CIO and Network World.
“We are providing more value to marketers by delivering innovative ad concepts that provide highly engaging content choices for readers,” Jeremy Rueb, vice president of program development for IDG Strategic Marketing Services, said in a press release.
IDG has emerged as a pacesetter among B2B publishers expanding their custom publishing offerings into full-blown marketing services businesses, in an effort to drive more digital revenues as advertisers embrace “vendor as publisher” models.  

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