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Online Advertising Articles
(June 2001)

Rich-Media Experiment Proves Successful

Edited by Joshua Smith

06/07/2001 -- Informix® Software Inc. added credence to the assumption that rich-media banners outperform standard GIF alternatives both in terms of branding and click-through-ratio. The company announced that it had conducted an experimental campaign in conjunction with rich-media technology and creative provider Onflow, taking full advantage of the latter company's creative animation and tracking systems.

Informix was attracted to Onflow's ability to offer unique, client-side performance metrics in a format that provided the rich look of broadcast television that retains time-honored branding efforts. The results showed a greater click-through rate with Onflow, delivering a 10 times greater response over an equivalent campaign using an animated GIF. "Onflow's ability to achieve a 1.24 percent click-through rate on a pure branding campaign is very impressive," said Brian Staff, Vice President of Marketing at Informix Software. "Onflow's high click-through rate can be attributed to their impressive animation."

The experimental ad campaign was run on RedHerring.com, primarily on its home page, and was served through DoubleClick. It was implemented using both an animated GIF file and an Onflow rich media file with both ad files having the same message and appearing on the same web pages. The superior result from the Onflow ad demonstrates the potential for rich-media technology and design to be exploited in such a fashion as to produce advertisements that get attention. "...the [creative] is so stunning, we think users are naturally drawn to the advertisement, and the high click-through rate is the result of this enhanced user experience," said Staff.

For the purposes of tracking the campaign above-and-beyond the stats offered by DoubleClick's applauded DART system, Informix used Onflow's accurate impression data as a way to understand the reach of the campaign and its brand recognition geographically. Onflow's patent pending, client-side tracking technology records detailed and precise user viewing and interaction information that online marketers can use to design more effective ads. The data, because it is collected directly from the source on the client machine, is highly accurate and reliable. In contrast, current reporting techniques rely on server side data and the use of extrapolation and analytical techniques to derive the data, resulting in unreliable, disputable data.

Cost-effective content production added to the Informix decision to use Onflow. With Onflow's closed-loop system designed specifically for the Internet, content creators can easily create, view, access, manage, serve and evaluate online ads. In addition, Onflow's compression technology gives Creatives more flexibility in incorporating interactive messages, content and effects, while keeping the file sizes 60-75% smaller than typical web animation files.


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