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Which Enhanced Tablet Ads Get the Highest Marks?

Rich media interstitials, pre-rolls with overlay and banner to full-page ads perform best

Tablets will be in the hands of more than half of US internet users this year, according to eMarketer estimates. With reach at a tipping point, advertising on tablets is shaping up to be a big opportunity for marketers. That said, the interactive devices are still fairly new and require a fresh approach that best leverages the device’s features.

VivaKi, a digital advertising solutions company, conducted a broad 14-month study in the US, which concluded in October 2012, to determine how certain enhanced tablet ads compared with standardized versions of common ad types. The study found that the banner to full-page ad, pre-roll with overlay ad and rich media interstitial ad showed the greatest lift across specific metrics, compared with the standardized version of each of these ad types.

At a clickthrough rate (CTR) of 8.7%, the banner to full-page ad’s clickthrough performance on tablets was more than four times greater than the static web banner. For engagement as well, the banner to full-page ad performed 127% better than the benchmark web banner.

The rich media interstitial also beat out the standard static interstitial in terms of engagement, performing 88.3% better. On CTRs, however, the rich media interstitial actually showed a slight decline, garnering a 3.3% CTR, vs. 4.3% for the standard interstitial. The pre-roll with overlay advanced ad also did not shine when it came to engagement, as compared with the standard pre-roll.

Where all the advanced tablet ad types showed lift over the benchmark was in brand metrics. In this case, VivaKi compared the awareness, message association and brand favorability among a control group who had not seen any ads with brand lift among those who had encountered the different ads—both benchmarks and advanced ad types. All three advanced ad types showed the greatest improvement in mobile ad awareness.

The banner to full-page ad showed 380% greater mobile ad awareness over the control group who had not seen any ad; for the pre-roll with overlay it was 500% higher mobile ad awareness; and for the rich media interstitial, improvement in mobile ad awareness was a whopping 800%.

The banner to full-page ad also performed at more than double the level of the standard banner for unaided awareness, mobile ad awareness, message association, brand favorability and purchase intent.

The pre-roll with overlay and the rich media interstitial did not stand out by quite as wide a margin across so many metrics but still showed improved performance over the corresponding benchmark ad by every metric for which data was available.

The study defined the banner to full-page ad model as a standard banner with the ability to expand to a full-screen, interactive ad; the pre-roll with overlay is a pre-roll video unit featuring additional video, gaming or social media content without leaving the video player; and the rich media interstitial ad model is a full-screen interactive ad typically run within print-based tablet content, for example, in a digital magazine.

Mojiva, a mobile ad network, asked tablet owners in January 2013 which among the standard tablet ad types they were most likely to respond to. A majority of respondents cited the standard banner, while another one-quarter anticipated responding best to rich media or interactive ads, and about one in five said they were most likely to respond to the expandable banner/full-screen ad.


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