Entertainment advertisers regularly face the daunting challenge of generating mass awareness for time-limited events and promotions. The window for grabbing mindshare for an upcoming event, premiere or launch is restricted. And with consumers now in greater control of what, when and where media is consumed, it takes more creativity than ever to get the job done.
Luckily, online, marketers have a number of tools to help them create mass awareness in a short period of time among a highly targeted audience. They also have the ability to measure in real time the effects of their campaigns. Strategies such as single-site and network-wide roadblocks are particularly well suited to these tasks.
A closer look at network-wide roadblocks
Similar to standard roadblocks, which enable advertisers to own all advertising on specific content for a given period of time, network-wide roadblocks enable advertisers to own an entire online audience, such as a specific demographic or behavioral segment, for a designated time period. They are highly concentrated campaigns comprising a large volume of impressions delivered over a short time period, typically one to five days.
Through a partnership with comScore Networks, Advertising.com recently measured the impact of such campaigns on consumer engagement, with impressive results.
The study showed that these brief, intensive campaigns can significantly increase consumer interaction with an advertiser's brands-- in addition to achieving awareness and mass reach. According to the research, consumers exposed to a network-wide roadblock spent significantly more time on -- and viewed more pages on -- the advertisers' sites than the control group. In the entertainment realm, that's advertising gold.
The interaction factor
Our research examined the impact of network-wide roadblocks on actual consumer engagement with an advertiser's brand. These results are of particular relevance to entertainment advertisers, as they demonstrate how a marketer can immediately assess the level of interest being generated in a launch or promotion. In the study, approximately 500 million total impressions were served for three advertising campaigns-we'll call them Advertisers X, Y and Z.
The study defined engagement as:
- Overall visitation to the advertiser's domain
- Time spent (per 1,000 exposed) on the advertiser's domain
- Page views (per 1,000 exposed) on the advertiser's domain
Data from these campaigns revealed that consumers exposed to this type of campaign demonstrated higher levels of engagement with the advertisers' brands. Network-wide roadblocks effectively increased visitation to the advertisers' websites, with the difference in visitation between exposed and control groups ranging from 166 percent to 1,700 percent. Not only were the campaigns effective in driving visitors to an advertiser's site, but results for Advertisers Y and Z also indicated that page consumption and minutes spent were higher for the exposed group.
These are exactly the kinds of trends entertainment advertisers want to see as they build momentum for an upcoming promotion. If a make-or-break summer blockbuster is opening on Friday, a network-wide roadblock during the week prior is a potent way to build intense, wide-scale and lasting interest-- ensuring babysitters are booked and dates are made for the Friday premiere. In addition, the marketer can monitor over the course of the week where and with what audiences interest is at its peak-- and can then optimize the campaign on the fly.
Splash is everything
Intense, cost-effective and, according to this research, very effective, network-wide roadblocks can be a powerful tool for entertainment advertisers pursuing the elusive goal of consumer engagement.
These super-sized campaigns provide entertainment advertisers with large reach across a diverse group of sites. Targeting desired demographics, content sections and geographic areas can help keep events or promotions top of mind among your most valuable audiences. And with advances in online video and other rich-media technologies, you can incorporate all the sight, sound and motion of TV with the Internet's control, interactivity and accountability.
Whether counting down to a season premiere, concert tour or new CD, network-wide roadblocks are worth exploring. They're an efficient branding vehicle with the power to create lasting awareness.
Brennan Beyer serves as Advertising.com's director of west coast sales. Read full bio.