If You Believe Online Ads Don’t Work … Cancel your TV, Radio and Print ASAP!

The Online Banner Gets No Love

At least once a week I hear the online banner doesn’t work.  Whether talking to a client, prospect, agency contemporary, media rep or reading some inane article in LinkedIn … there is little faith in the online banner.


  • Personal bias … a favorite observation is ‘I have never clicked on a banner ad’
  • Clients seek linear, easy-to-measure solutions … the banner works better at the top of the sales funnel vs. the bottom
  • Last click attribution, a dangerous methodology, is the predominant method for tracking conversion
  • Low click-thru rate is oft cited as a measure of poor performance

Research Says Otherwise .. The Banner Has Plenty of Value in the Consumer Path-to-Purchase

 Multi-attribution advertising research from Wharton and Carnegie-Mellon demonstrate that the banner does have value in moving consumers through the path-to-purchase to a sale.  The findings are similar to other research done in this area. 

  • Display ads have an important effect of moving consumers from a disengaged state to an active buying state
  • They might not have a high conversion rate, but these ads significantly impact the consumer’s deliberation process
  • Display ads have a significant effect on conversion by moving prospects from upper to lower funnel active buying state
  • The more contextually relevant the placement, the greater the effect on purchase behavior
  • Since display ads work better at the top of the funnel than the bottom, they are downgraded in importance as most brands only deploy last click attribution 
Source: Media Exposure Through the Funnel:  Abhisheck, Fader, Hosanagar


Brands Hold Digital to a Higher Standard Than Traditional … For No Good Reason

Marketers tend to value/judge digital advertising on a Direct Performance Model vs. the Branding Model for traditional

  • Because  digital provides a means for direct engagement like clicking , opting-in, purchasing, etc…. brands tend to focus only on action events as the measure of digital marketing
  • They totally lose sight that ad exposures occur and have immense value in increasing awareness, consideration and purchase intent (Zig has years of real time research data for brands like Dutch Boy, Krylon, Chili’s and others that show dramatic gains due solely to an ad exposure … not a click)

It is illogical to continue  crediting TV, radio, newspaper, outdoor etc. with a value for creating brand awareness, but because digital can produce direct actions, it gets zero credit for moving consumers to active buying states.


Straight Up  ⇒ Reevaluate your digital performance measures immediately.  If you are not willing to credit the online banner for branding … then your TV, radio and print are worthless and a waste of marketing dollars as well


Zig is a Social/Mobile/Video specialist that drives brand engagement by creating interactive user experiences.  We programmatically reach in-market buyers, at the lowest cost, and move them to conversion.  You can see our work by clicking on the link ⇒ http://www.zigmarketing.com.

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