2019 – 25 years since the 1st digital banner ad

It’s hard to believe that its been 25 years since the 1st banner ad, created by AT&T came to life.

It seems it had a 44% click rate at the time, which was astounding to say the least.

As reported by The Drum, advertising in general has moved on a lot since then.

Banner ads were then seen as a truly monetizable and accountable medium. One can’t really vouch for the ecosystem these days.

From click farms to an increasingly opaque ecosystem, marketers such as P&G have been calling for technologies like blockchain to be used for better transparency in the media supply chain.

Of course, apart from the shady economics of the ecosystem, creativity has also greatly suffered since the banner boom.

Alison Griffiths, head of paid media at iCrossing, acknowledges these issues yet maintains the overarching importance of top-line marketing messaging.

She says: “There is a danger with the advent of digital leading to such micro focus on conversion and conversion metrics that you do lose that bigger picture with creative.”

To tackle this issue, she suggests that industry practitioners don’t lose sight of the importance of top-line brand messaging and always remember that while digital data unlocks incredible consumer insight, it is your creative campaign that impacts consumer behaviour.

Brand safety is also another problem that advertisers need to understand as it’s not just the platform’s problem as the explosive growth of digital ad buying has laid bare limitations within the culture of the marketplace.

David Billings, head of programmatic UK at Accenture Interactive, believes that advertisers need to be more thorough in their vetting of platforms.

Billings has a very poignant note to end on. He wishes consumers will become more aware of advertising and how they are marketed to.

“I like to be aware of when I’m being advertised to, versus when I’m reading editorial content or when my personal assistant is making a recommendation…I’d like to see, as consumers, us demanding a little more awareness about when we’re being advertised to and when brands are talking to us.”

Source: The Drum

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