3 minutes

Combining the reach of display, with the precision of paid search

While the current economic climate is encouraging brands to focus more on their short-term goals and maximise immediate revenue, we believe it is vital that they don’t lose sight of the larger picture and growth ambition long-term. As a brand, it is essential for consumers to have an idea of who you are and an understanding of your product as they enter the purchase funnel. This is where the importance of brand awareness comes in. If consumers are already familiar with a brand and their offering, they are more likely to trust them, or even search for them and their product directly.

What is Display Advertising?

Display advertising allows brands to connect with prospective customers in contextually relevant environments. The core objectives of a display advertising campaign are to increase brand awareness and increase brand retention. The main benefit of a display campaign is that it can either reach prospective customers when they are looking at related content anywhere across the internet, or be used specifically to target those who have previously visited the website, and deliver messaging to encourage them to return and make that purchase. 


Current Trends

Video Ads

One of the largest trends we are seeing develop in display marketing is the incorporation of video assets into the traditional IAB standard display formats to increase consumer engagement and traffic to a brand’s landing pages. Brands have seen click through rate increases of up to 267% by simply adding video assets! These differ greatly from in-stream ads as they are not imposed on the consumer as pre-roll (shown before video content) or mid-roll (shown in-between video content). Instead they are shown within standard display banner formats away from video content, and are opt-in to view (either click to view, or hover to view). Due to the less intrusive nature of in-banner video ads, they are more suited for brands that want to promote awareness rather than just drive sales/leads. 

Rich Media Solutions

Another key trend right now is the development of rich media solutions. It is constantly evolving to include more interactive features to entice consumer engagement. Examples of some of the more recent capabilities of rich media include the utilisation of augmented reality, and the inclusion of playable ad formats in interstitial formats. While these formats do cost more than the standard static banner ads, recent studies have shown that the click through rate of rich media formats can be up to ten times higher than traditional banner ads.

But How Does This Relate To Performance Marketing?

The one major limitation of putting all of your eggs (paid media budget) in one basket (paid search), is that paid search is purely reactive – it requires the consumer to already be searching for products/services that are related to your brand’s offering.

The key benefits of including display marketing into your marketing mix are:

  • Using tailored assets, display ads can target individuals who fit specific target audience criteria and raise awareness of your brand. 
  • The granularity of targeting available, as we can target users based as specifically as the device they are on and their location. 
  • Once a user clicks through, they can then be added within re-targeting audiences and guided further down the purchase funnel through different display ads. 
  • The channel can re-engage with previous visitors to your site, reminding them of your brand and product – distracting them from purchasing elsewhere.  
  • Display gives you the option to build audience pools through “look-a-like” targeting, where it’s then possible to target users who show similar characteristics to those who have already interacted with your ads or purchased from you previously.
  • Other traditional branding activity doesn’t allow for this level of precision and measurability, as well as the flexibility to constantly be able to refine our audiences and targeting strategies dependent on performance and trends.
  • The lower cost usually associated with running display ads, due to lower CPCs seen through this channel, and potential for driving increases in direct site visits or organic searches as the display ads make users aware of your brand and offering

The teams view

These longer term strategies using display also help to establish brands in the marketplace, maintaining (and likely increasing!) their market share while also increasing the long term revenue driven by digital marketing overall. 

We’ve recently been through some seriously difficult times for both consumers and brands in the last year, but there now appears to be light at the end of the tunnel, with hopes of the UK economy reopening in the near future. Now is the time for businesses to focus their efforts on increasing their brand awareness, to be seen amongst the many new online retailers which emerged in 2020 and ensure that their brand is at the forefront of people’s mind when they are product researching and looking to make those purchases, all whilst capitalising on the increase in demand online.