Wednesday, July 18, 2001
INTERACTIVE ADVERTISING BUREAU (IAB), DOUBLECLICK, MSN, AND CNET NETWORKS RELEASE GROUNDBREAKING ONLINE BRAND RESEARCH FINDINGS

Four Individual Studies Provide Extensive Data on The Effectiveness of Internet Advertising As A Branding Tool For Marketers On The Web

New York, July 18, 2001 - In a joint presentation of research studies, the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB), and member companies DoubleClick Inc. (NASDAW:DCLK) and MSN today unveiled their separate studies on the effectiveness of branding on the Internet at a press conference in New York City. Additionally, CNET Networks Inc. (NASDAQ:CNET) today released information from a study done with Millward Brown Intelliquest.

All three research efforts examined the brand effectiveness of online marketing units including the Interactive Marketing Units (IMUs), for which the IAB issued voluntary guidelines in February of this year. The IAB and MSN studies were fielded by Dynamic Logic; DoubleClick's study was conducted by Diameter.

The overall takeaway from each study reinforces the fact that online advertising can be used effectively for branding. Some highlights from the three studies presented in New York include: 

  • The standard IAB 468 X 60 banner works to increase brand awareness, message association, brand favorability and purchase intent.
  • Bigger is better. The new larger IAB IMU formats improve key branding metrics by an average of 40% across all three studies compared to baseline measures for the nine advertisers.
  • Rich Media technologies such as Audio, Video, Flash and DHTML used with IMUs deliver greater impact and conclusively increase branding effectiveness.
  • Ad implementation makes a difference too. Interstitial ads, displayed during a transition from one Web page to the next, boost key brand metrics by an average of 194%.

"One of IAB's primary goals is to foster the use and acceptance of interactive advertising and marketing by providing proof of the medium's effectiveness," said IAB President and CEO Robin Webster. "The IAB ad effectiveness study, which we have unveiled today, is another demonstration of the branding power of online advertising. While the overall results from the three tests overwhelmingly reinforce the effectiveness of the IMUs, each test offers differing results based on the strength of the creative.

"The IAB study would not have been possible without the cooperation of our member partners - iWon, MSN, Snowball and CNET Networks, and their advertisers, Bristol-Myers Squibb Company, uBid.com and Genuity among others. It is especially important for the industry that DoubleClick and MSN have chosen to present their own findings along with the IAB's, reinforcing all of our commitment to proving interactive advertising works," Webster concluded.

The IAB study, conducted by Dynamic Logic, found that the new larger ad units (IMUs) are 25% more effective in lifting key brand metrics such as brand awareness and message association - even at one exposure. The research also shows that additional exposures significantly increase persuasion metrics such as purchase intent. The research was based on 8750 respondents, four advertisers and 12 creative units.

Details of the study can be found at www.iab.net.

The goal of DoubleClick's online marketing effectiveness study was to determine the impact of various online marketing tactics on traditional brand marketing goals. The study reveals that like traditional marketing, the Internet is an effective tool for enhancing brands in the minds of consumers. Across each online marketing unit tested, traditional brand measures including brand awareness, aided advertising awareness, ad attribute recall, and ad recall increased considerably.

  • Aggregated results for three brands across each online marketing tactic tested, showed an 85% increase in aided advertising awareness.
  • Banner ads increased brand measures 56% and large rectangles 86%
  • Interstitial ads increased brand measures 194%

This comprehensive study provides marketers with evidence that just like offline marketing, the Internet has positive effects on brand building," said Barry Salzman, president, DoubleClick Global Media. "As an industry we must begin to embrace new sizes, formats and page implementation methods as complimentary tools for reaching traditional brand marketing objectives."

The study, conducted by Diameter, a division of DoubleClick, measured the impact of various online ad formats, sizes and methods of implementation on traditional brand marketing goals. Twenty five sites including Dilbert, FreeEdgar, iWon, and iVillage, Inc., participated in the test as well as three brand advertisers, Unilever's Salon Selectives brand, British Airways and Homestore. Diameter used an experimental research design test and control methodology. The study carries a high level of statistical significance with 153,455 total survey respondents.

"Without a doubt, the interactive potential of these new, larger ad units engages consumers in ways no other medium delivers," said Jed Savage, director of national sales for MSN at Microsoft Corp. "When used with MSN enriched ad technology, the new units are two to three times more effective in increasing message association than standard banners."

Working with Dynamic Logic, MSN tested two campaigns with different creative formats and sizes for two advertisers, uBid and ShareBuilder. The study found that the Skyscraper creative size worked best, lifting brand awareness by 16% -- four times the average lift among all campaigns that Dynamic Logic has tested. The study also found that interactive DHTML units lifted awareness by 13%, greatly outperforming the Dynamic Logic average and doubling the performance of the non-interactive creative in the campaigns.

In summary:

Ad Size: The IAB, DoubleClick and MSN studies converge on the point that the standard 486x60 banner is effective in branding and that bigger is better. The results, as one would suspect, range from one advertiser to the next and for the Skyscraper and Large Rectangle average around 40% better branding (for a single ad exposure) compared to a brand baseline.

New technologies: Flash and DHTML hold the most promise. The DoubleClick study measured GIF, Audio, Video, and Flash. They found that Audio, Video, and Flash improved the effectiveness of these larger ad units above and beyond standard animated Gif images. In DoubleClick's study of three advertisers, they found that Flash increased branding metrics by an average of 71%. The MSN study measured Gif, Flash and interactive DHTML ad units. Across the two advertisers MSN measured, they found that Flash increased brand awareness and message association by 15% while DHTML increased the same metrics by 19%.

Ad position: The DoubleClick study addressed ad positions from on the page, to pop-up over the page, to interstitial in the transition from one web page to the next. The DoubleClick study suggests that interstitials work as much as 194% better at boosting brand awareness and recall.

The studies are unanimous that the Skyscraper and Large Rectangle ad units provide greater value for the advertiser. Furthermore, advertisers can get even more value by using Rich Media technology such as Flash and DHTML. And finally, interstitial ads can add substantially to online branding effectiveness. For further information about the effectiveness of digital marketing in moving people down a path to brand preference and purchase consideration, please see complimentary research announced today by CNET Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ:CNET).

About the IAB
Founded in 1996, the IAB is the industry's leading online advertising association. Its activities include evaluating and recommending standards and practices, fielding research to document the effectiveness of the interactive medium and educating the advertising industry about the use of interactive advertising. Membership includes companies that are actively engaged in the sale of interactive advertising.

About DoubleClick Inc.
DoubleClick is building the infrastructure that makes marketing work in the digital world. Combining media, data, research and technological expertise, DoubleClick allows marketers to deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time, while helping Web publishers maximize their revenue and build their business online. DoubleClick Inc. has global headquarters in New York City and maintains 37 offices around the world.

About MSN
MSN is the world's most popular destination on the Web, attracting more than 230 million visitors per month. Available in 33 markets and 17 languages, MSN provides consumers with their home on the Web -- where they can get everything they need from the Web and make the most of their time online. MSN is a world leader in delivering Web services to consumers and digital marketing solutions to businesses worldwide. MSN is located on the Web at http://www.msn.com/.

About Dynamic Logic
Dynamic Logic is the online research company that pioneered online advertising measurement "Beyond the Click." The company's AdIndex product provides online advertisers, ad agencies, and publishers with crucial information regarding the branding effectiveness of their specific online advertising campaigns. In doing so, Dynamic Logic helps its clients quantify the impact and ROI of ALL impressions served, not just that 1% on which people click. Dynamic Logic's clients include Citibank, Foote, Cone & Belding, Intel, iVillage, Inc..com, J. Walter Thompson, Kimberly-Clark Corporation (Kotex), Microsoft, Nabisco, New York Times Digital, Ogilvy & Mather, Procter & Gamble, Sara Lee, Travelocity and Young & Rubicam.

Contacts:

Marla Nitke IAB
212-380-4714
marla@iab.net

DoubleClick
Gia Rokeach
DoubleClick Inc.
(212) 381-5486
[email protected]

MSN
Stefanie Schlect
MSN
(425) 705-4606
[email protected]

Dynamic Logic
Michelle Robertson
The MWW Group
(212) 827-3748
[email protected]