Interactive advertisements are why your banner ads aren’t working anymore

Originally posted onto 1/29/16


By making an advertisement something a user will enjoy rather than see right through, unconventional advertisements are currently the top attention-getter when it comes to information placement.

With plug-ins that anyone can add to their internet browsers becoming more and more popular that are specifically designed to keep incoming ads at bay, companies are scrambling to find their way around the walls that are being built to keep them out. So with all of these barriers keeping traditional ads out of sight, how do marketers plan on getting their messages around the wall? –They have to be invited in.

Unconventional ads such as Snapchat’s “Lenses” feature, which allow the users of the social app to overlay a pre-loaded picture frame to hover around the photo taken by the user, are what more and more companies are utilizing to promote their own products or brands on. Movie studios, for example, are taking advantage of these sendable advertising opportunities by having upcoming movie characters pop up and be a part of the Snapchat “Lenses” experience. Rather than just posting a promoted Tweet or Facebook or Pinterest post, interactive social media ads that don’t seem like ads is the way to go.

The idea is to create an advertising experience that doesn’t feel like an advertising experience. Hurts to think about, but rather than cutting right to the chase in telling consumers “Buy our product!”, letting consumers get to that understanding themselves is the answer. Although much cheaper to simply place a banner-ad or a pop up ad on a popular app, the investment of creating an experience that is enjoyable and actually shareable between friends and family members is incomparable. Outdated and increasingly obsolete, ads that don’t do more than inform are ignored.

Think back to ’96. This was the year that a computer game called Chex Quest was dropped into cereal boxes as a gimmick to sell more units. This being the first time in history that this particular strategy was put into practice, the sales of the puffed rice cereal squares soared due to the fact that in order to play the game, you had to buy more cereal. Word got out about the exciting experience the game provided and the demand of people wanting to explore that same experience rose dramatically.

Same thing applies today. The consumers of Chex cereal forgot that this was a plan to lure in more sales of cereal because they wanted the experience, and because the experience was so memorable they didn’t mind buying more and more cereal.

Even for people who don’t even like Chex, they still bought a box for a chance to play Chex Quest. As marketers, we aren’t just selling the product, we are selling the experience that makes consumers want the product.



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