Online Advertising: The Promise Vs. The Reality

Being a very modern kind of creative agency, we are sometimes involved in the field of online advertising. Nothing unusual in that. However, when perusing yet another online media plan, it occurred to us that marketers are being taken for fools. The reason? The harsh reality of traditional online advertising spaces falls very short of the large promise of their names. To help bring a touch of welcome transparency, we have devised this handy guide to the actual reality of online advertising spaces, with easy reference to everyday objects. (objects not depicted actual size)

1 - The Banner 

The Promise
We all know what a banner is. A large piece of material draped off a building or suchlike. Or maybe something towed along by a plane above the heads of an inquisitive crowd. Just imagine your marketing message writ large as such. Imagine it's awesome persuasive power.



The Reality
An online banner ad is in fact about the size of a regular fish finger.





2 - The Leaderboard

The Promise
Wow. A leaderboard. Just conjure a mental picture of your brand or slogan emblazoned on a leaderboard. Adoring crowds of sports fanatics staring right at your message in foot-high letters above the important scores of the day's event. The massed ranks of the world's sports media focusing their cameras on it. Wow indeed.


The Reality
In reality, an online Leaderboard advert is approximately the size of the bottom of an average-sized paperback novel.
3 - The Skyscraper

The Promise
The tallest buildings in the entire world. Towering hundreds of feet high above its neighbours, dominating the skyline with power and grace. The idea of one's message being emblazoned across such a modern-day monument to commerce is enough to make even the most reserved marketer let out a little girly squeal of glee. Ten feet high, a hundred feet, more? Imagine its communicative power.



The Reality
An online advertising skyscraper is actually abut the size of a highlighter pen, with another lid popped on top.

13 comments:

  1. A really constructive and well thought out blog post. Thanks for adding this value to my day.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Mmmmh.....fish fingers.

    ReplyDelete
  3. You people crack me up. Fish finger indeed :-)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Skyscraper. The coolest word ever invented. Fun post. Thanx!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Online Cynic8 June 2011 21:56

    I bet them clients would get more bang for their buck if they advertised their wares on the doubled lidded highlighter pen rather than pissing their money away on poxy online banners. Skyscraper indeed.
    Maybe if our media brethren could devise some kind of spurious but superficially attractive "cost per picking up a highlighter pen and taking off both lids" numbers based nonsense measurement it could really take off.
    Well done for outing this bollocks.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I have a client who's wasted tens of thousands of pounds on fish finger sized adverts over the last couple of years.

    ReplyDelete
  7. m denton esq9 June 2011 18:02

    With the application of various food colourings I bet you could actually print an ad on a fishfinger...I'd really like to see that.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I bet you would Mr Denton, I bet you would.

    Fishvertising.

    ReplyDelete
  9. very funny. online advertising is poo. worthless poo.

    ReplyDelete
  10. The "fish finger" ad has had its day, but I feel compelled to disagree with other comments that question the value of online advertising. It's effectiveness is clear from the increasing spend from clients.

    You hit the nail on the head in your opening paragraph - "traditional online advertising spaces falls very short". However, things like bellybands, takeovers etc., whilst expensive, allow much more creative freedom.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Don't mistake increased spend for proof of effectiveness.

    ReplyDelete