Compression is Sexy. It’s Also the Biggest Issue in Ads.

We’ll level with you: compression wasn’t sexy. At least, it wasn’t until the series Silicon Valley gave viewers a fly-on-the-wall view as techies in California rallied to make Pied Piper, a revolutionary compression algorithm, a success on the open market.

Although Silicon Valley is a fictional series, there is a lot of truth on which it is based. Here at Nexd, we think compression is not only sexy, but also essential – and we want to talk about it. Compression, that is – and also why you need to bear it in mind when creating ads.

These are the biggest changes in the ad world – are you prepared?


You’ve Got Great Creatives – Why Compress Them?

As anyone involved in the visual arts or graphic design will know, images, when they are exported in raw formats, are big, heavy files. Of course, most of us view the world wide web through either small laptops or portable handheld devices, and on even the most sophisticated of those, the image is arguably less important than getting it on screen quickly, and displaying it with enough quality that the user feels it is a good experience.

For example, the most popular photo-sharing platform is obviously Instagram – but Instagram quite severely compresses images, so artists and photographers have learned to make do with a compromised image, which is miniaturised and cropped to fit the platform where, arguably, the most people can see it.

People who use Instagram to display their artwork are willing to make that compromise, as are advertisers on the platform, but what we feel is that the compromise should not be visible to the end user. That’s why our compression is sophisticated enough that, however you want your creatives to be manipulated by the user, what they will see is a lifelike image, on all devices, with no sign of a loss of quality.

Why is Compression So Often a Problem?

Usually when a file is compressed, whatever program is doing the compressing will throw out part of the file’s information. This is a natural consequence of compression, but it can lead to problems further down the line.

How do you know, for example, that the carefully planned product shoot you organised for your ad will look as good in the resulting online release as it did when you got the high resolution photo files back from the photographer? With most compression software, you don’t. It’s a question of trusting in the process, most of the time.

Camera next to a man typing on a MacBook Pro

(Photo: The Creative Exchange on Unsplash)

With Nexd ads, it’s a different situation. Yes, we compress creatives, but thanks to our unique Nexd Engine, we ensure that visual clarity and quality is maintained even after a compression to a tenth of the size of the original photo, video or other visual material. Hence, although Nexd compresses creatives, you can be confident of those painstakingly-taken pictures still looking slick when the ad is online. For this reason, when you put your creatives through Nexd Campaign Manager, you can be sure they’ll still be looking great.

Google Is Out To Get You

There is another issue – the restrictions Google has put in place, particularly on its Chrome browser. We wrote about this on our blog, because we believe it is one of the single biggest issues affecting the advertising industry, and yet it is not being discussed nearly enough, owing in part to the reticence of many adtech companies to bring up an issue that directly affects their customer base.

What does it have to do with compression?

Google is trying to force ‘heavy’ or bloated ads, such as those rich media ads which are still made with HTML5, off Chrome. As we mentioned, there are several parallel reasons for this – the poor user experience on slower devices, the annoyance factor of some ads that promise interactivity without delivering, and potentially a wish on the part of Google for advertisers to move towards platforms it approves of (or owns).

This all means that for an interactive, or moving, ad to be featured on the world’s most popular browser, it has to be light. That’s where our compression of creatives comes in. Most adtech software compresses in some way, but we’ve got the only platform that compresses up to tenfold with no discernible change to the creative on any platform. If you want to check this out for yourself, contact our support team, and we’ll be glad to demonstrate how your ads will look as Nexd ads.

Your Ads Need a Diet

The future of ads will be smaller, lighter, and more streamlined. Ads need to go on a diet to fit into the current and future requirements of giants like Google. This is unavoidable, and, like any diet, you’ll hear from many people who just don’t want to do it right now – they’d rather wait until tomorrow, or next week, or whatever.

We want to bring you a futureproof experience, right now. Whether you’re one part of a larger marketing team, or you’re the head of a small startup that needs a way to create nimble, viral ads from scratch, Nexd has the solution to help you. Talk to us, and we’ll be glad to tell you more.