What Are My Online Advertising Options

By: Dave Carter

With the growing population of Internet users worldwide, advertisers are taking advantage of this medium to reach a wider market. It was in 1994 when the first online banner ads were sold in the US. Since then, online advertisers and marketers continue to explore and develop new ways to sell their products online.

Some studies have shown a trend from TV to Internet as more users spend time online than in front of their television these days. Also, more people are now getting their TV content online. In marketing, wherever there audience is, there you must be. Visibility of a product in a particular channel is key to promote products. And with lower cost of advertising online, many advertisers find this a worthwhile marketing investment.

Banner Ad

Online advertising comes in different types and formats. One of the most basic and earlier forms is the banner ad. The simplest banner ad is Text Ad without graphics but with engaging formatting and hyperlinks that direct to an advertiser's site. You can see these types of ads in individual websites or a publisher's ad server.

To make things more appealing to the audience, graphics are added, and this one is called a Display Ad. The purpose of these attention-grabbing visuals is to encourage the audience to take a closer look at the offer and possibly click on the ad to check out more about the offer. This can take various forms from boxes, circles, to horizontal or vertical orientation, headers or footers. With improvements in graphics, flash animation is already possible for many banner ads.

Email Advertising

An e-newsletter that members subscribe to is another channel to promote products. It can be in the form classified ads in the e-newsletter or sponsorship. An advertiser can reach a target market through this type of online advertising.

Video Ads

Perhaps the most popular type of advertising today is online video. A shorter version of a TV commercial can run before, during, or after a video online. With the popularity of video streaming and video sharing on the Internet, many advertisers have already distributed their media content in this form. The audience can also choose not to watch the ad or sit-through it for a couple of seconds. Other pre-roll video ads do not have the opt-out feature so the audience is compelled to watch the video ad.

With video being more engaging than any media content today, many banners ads have also begun using video over graphics or text format. Advertisers can also cut costs if they only have to pay for ads that audience have opted in or clicked "play" in banner format.

Different Forms of Targeting

Have you ever noticed how some ads you’ve encountered while browsing the Internet seem to be related to you based on location or recent searches? Publishers were somehow able to track your user trends and location that they can now distribute ads specific to you. That is one form of target advertising online. This can be categorized into 3 types – contextual, behavorial, and geo-targeting. Contextual is when banner ads are related to the content you are currently browsing or reading. Behavorial targeting is when banner ads are related to your recent online purchases, browsing history, and searches. Geo-targeting or local advertising is when banners ads are specific to your location, so when you're browsing, you would probably see more local advertisers in banners ads.

As you can see, there are many opportunities and strong promotional activities you can take advantage if you’re an advertiser. More reliable and trusted platforms, plus better targeting methods make online advertising even more promising today. For more info on video advertising, visit AudienceTV.

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Dave Carter is an independent consultant for small businesses. His expertise in consumer electronics is backed up by 12 years of experience in the telecommunications industry. He recommends this site for more on instream video ads.

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