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Online Advertising Articles
(July 2001)

Online Advertising Leaders Release Groundbreaking Brand Research Findings

Four Individual Studies Provide Extensive Data on The Effectiveness of Internet Advertising As A Branding Tool For Marketers On The Web

New York, July 18, 2001 - In a joint presentation of research studies, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and member companies DoubleClick, Inc. and MSN today unveiled their individual studies on the effectiveness of branding on the Internet at a press conference in New York City. Separately, CNET Networks, Inc., today released information from a study done with Millward Brown IntelliQuest.

The three research studies presented in New York City today examined the brand effectiveness of online marketing units including the Interactive Marketing Units (IMUs), for which the IAB issued voluntary guidelines in February of this year. Other elements tested were different technologies and a variety of ad placements. The IAB and MSN studies were fielded by Dynamic Logic; DoubleClick's study was conducted by Diameter.

The overall takeaway from each study reinforces the fact that online advertising can be used effectively for branding. Some additional highlights from the three studies presented in New York include:

  • The standard IAB 468 X 60 banner works to increase brand awareness, message association, brand favorability and purchase intent.
  • The new larger IAB IMU formats improve key branding metrics by an average of 40% across all three studies compared to baseline measures for the nine advertisers.
  • Rich Media technologies such as audio, video, Flash and DHTML used with IMUs deliver greater impact and conclusively increase branding effectiveness.
  • Ad implementation makes a difference as well... interstitial ads, displayed during a transition from one Web page to the next, boost key brand metrics by an average of 194%.

"One of IAB's primary goals is to foster the use and acceptance of interactive advertising and marketing by providing proof of the medium's effectiveness," said IAB President & CEO Robin Webster. "The IAB ad effectiveness study, which we have unveiled today, is another demonstration of the branding power of online advertising. While the overall results from the three tests overwhelmingly reinforce the effectiveness of online advertising, each test offers differing results based on the strength of the creative.

"The IAB study would not have been possible without the cooperation of our member partners - iWon, MSN, Snowball and CNET Networks, and their advertisers, The Coca- Cola Company, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, uBid.com and Genuity. It is especially important for the industry that DoubleClick and MSN have chosen to present their own findings along with the IAB's, reinforcing all of our commitment to proving interactive advertising works," Webster concluded.

The IAB Study

The IAB study, conducted by Dynamic Logic, found that the new larger ad units (IMUs) are 25% more effective in lifting key brand metrics such as brand awareness and message association - even at one exposure. The research also shows that additional exposures significantly increase persuasion metrics such as purchase intent. The research was based on 8750 respondents, four advertisers and 12 creative units.

Details of the study may be found at www.iab.net.

The DoubleClick Study

The goal of DoubleClick's online marketing effectiveness study was to determine the impact of various online marketing tactics on traditional brand marketing goals. The study reveals that like traditional marketing, the Internet is an effective tool for enhancing brands in the minds of consumers. Across each online marketing unit tested, traditional brand measures including aided brand awareness, aided advertising awareness, ad attribute recall, and ad recall increased considerably:

  • Aggregated results for three brands across each online marketing tactic tested, showed an 85% increase in aided advertising awareness.
  • Banner ads increased brand measures 56% and large rectangles 86%
  • Interstitial ads increased brand measures 194%

"This comprehensive study provides marketers with evidence that just like offline marketing, the Internet has positive effects on brand building," said Barry Salzman, President, DoubleClick Global Media. "As an industry we must begin to embrace new sizes, formats and page implementation methods as complementary tools for reaching traditional brand marketing objectives."

The study, conducted by Diameter, a division of DoubleClick, measured the impact of various online ad formats, sizes and methods of implementation on traditional brand marketing goals. Twenty-five sites including: Dilbert, FreeEdgar, iWon, and iVillage, participated in the test as well as three brand advertisers: Unilever's Salon Selectives brand, British Airways and Homestore. Diameter used an experimental research design test and control methodology. The study carries a high level of statistical significance with 153,455 total survey respondents.

Details of the study can be found at www.doubleclick.net.

The MSN Study

"Without a doubt, the interactive potential of these new, larger ad units engage consumers in ways no other medium delivers," said Jed Savage, director of national sales for MSN at Microsoft Corp. "When used with MSN enriched ad technology, the new units are two to three times more effective in increasing message association than traditional standard banners."

Working with Dynamic Logic, MSN tested two campaigns with different creative formats and sizes for two advertisers, uBid and ShareBuilder. The study found that the Skyscraper creative size worked best, lifting brand awareness by 16%, four times the average lift among all campaigns Dynamic Logic has tested. The study also found that interactive, DHTML units lifted awareness by 13%, greatly outperforming both the Dynamic Logic average and double the performance of the non-interactive creative in the campaigns.

"Based on these extensive studies including thirty sites, nine advertisers, 170,000 respondents over a two-month period the evidence is irrefutable that Internet advertising is effective in branding. Future studies will be fielded on the value of interactive advertising versus other forms of advertising," concluded Ms. Webster


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