Rich media is a poor man’s game

You don’t need to be rich to take advantage of rich media.

Big brands and their expensive ad agencies have developed and launched the lion’s share of rich media ads in the past, and big budgets and specialty knowledge in HTML5 were often considered prerequisites. But now, this lucrative marketing strategy is available for everyone.

Jennifer Pallian via Unsplash

Move past simple banner ads and tap into the magic of rich media ads, which effortlessly adapt to the user’s device or actions. But you may be wondering why you would want to use rich media instead of banner ads. Read on to learn more.

Why Rich Media?

The interactivity of rich media from scrolling, flipping, and floating to 3D objects, games, virtual showrooms, and video seizes consumer attention, while banners just sit there looking pretty.

Using rich media increases:

  • Impact
  • Visibility
  • Conversion Rates
  • Action Rates
  • Purchase Intent
  • User Experience
  • Trackability

According to eMarketer, rich media click-through rates (CTR) beat standard banner ad CTR by 267%. The average advertiser would kill for that kind of CTR improvement.

Improving Rich Media

But use rich media wrong and you could be pouring even more money down a black hole.

Recently, we wrote about Google’s efforts that will bring some needed changes to the advertising industry. A recent Google update to its Chrome browser blocks bloated, resource-heavy rich media ads by default — no ad-blocker needed. So many marketers have been buying rich media ad space, without realizing Chrome users will see nothing if the ads are not lean enough.

Creativity has pushed forward, requiring more digital resources to develop breakthrough marketing strategies. Backend technology — like a bad rich media ad, for instance — lags. Developers produce most rich media ads using HTML5, and a large file size is often a feature of HTML5, generally not a good one.

Overstuffed HTML5 ads delay loading due to their resource-heavy nature. This is particularly true of video-based ads. They load slowly or buffer incessantly. This creates a bad consumer experience as well as poor ad performance. It wastes your target’s time and your precious advertising dollars.

Slow-loading rich media ads are becoming more problematic as consumer attention spans continue to narrow. Research indicates that millennials have an attention span of about six seconds. Google reports that 53% of mobile site users leave a page that takes longer than three seconds to load. Slow-loading ads are one of the key factors in page load speeds.

Video-based rich media ads are increasing in importance too.

According to Forbes, video makes up as much as 80% of all web traffic. Additionally, Forbes reports that videos are shared 1,200% more often than text and links combined. Video content can be sluggish, so it is crucial that they – like all rich media — are as lean as possible.

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) considers lightweight ads to be critical. The agency has produced guidelines in its Standard Ad Unit Portfolio for video size, file weight, and load times.

“This new ad portfolio puts user experience front and center, benefitting both consumers and the brands that want to reach them online,” said Randall Rothenberg, IAB CEO and president.

Moving Past HTML5

You could become an HTML5 expert and try to ferret out the secret to slimming down your content, or you could use a leaner technology that is based on online gaming: WebGL.

Nexd developed a simple-to-use platform that produces lean content using this technology. Drag and drop, no HTML5 coding necessary.

Slim ads start with our standalone Asset Optimizer. It reduces image and video file sizes while maintaining image quality. Then, our WebGL-based solution uses the speed advantages of the graphics processing unit over the central processing unit. This allows us an unprecedented ability to create beautiful, smooth and intuitive animations and interaction possibilities.

The result is that the ads you produce with NEXD’s creative management platform won’t get blocked by Google Chrome’s new tech.

Cost-Effective Rich Media

Another advantage of our platform is lower cost. You are only limited by your own creativity in the number of ads you produce. No ad agency — or its exorbitant costs — are necessary.

This becomes more critical as ad fatigue sets in. It’s estimated that the average internet user sees 1,700 banner ads per month. That same old ad served up repeatedly does you or your campaign little good. Research indicates that big-budget ads begin to fade within seven days if you spend $1 million.

The more ads you have, the better, no matter what size your budget is. Ad repetition equals consumer apathy. Keeping things fresh improves the customer experience.

Fresh ads also boost campaign performance. More creative means more chances to discover ads that outperform others. Inside Performance Marketing writes, “Recent research from Nielsen confirmed that ad creative is the most important advertising element with the greatest contribution to sales.”

Now, this doesn’t mean you have to produce 100 unique ads. It is often as simple as:

  • Changing background colors, font style, and font size
  • Swapping out images
  • Adding basic motion to a still image
  • Including a moving logo
  • Scrolling in different benefits
  • Changing unit sizes
  • Updating your call-to-action
  • Adding audio
  • Switch the user interaction

Altering how your audience interacts with the ad is as simple as duplicating your creative and switching the layout, but it allows the user to experience your ad in a completely different way. For a few minutes of work you can easily enhance the creativity of your campaign and make the brand experience much more memorable.

The NEXD platform makes changes to your rich media campaigns affordable, simple, and quick.

Rich media is for the many, not the few. Now’s the time for the poor man to beat the rich at their own game.

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