Monday, May 6, 2013
IAB Ad Operations Council and Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence Release ‘HTML5 for Digital Advertising 1.0’ for Public Comment

To Meet Increasing Demand for Cross-Screen Ad Delivery, IAB Establishes Guidance on HTML5 to Streamline Ad Creation & Lower Operational Costs

NEW YORK, NY (May 6, 2013) — In a cross-screen digital world, marketers and agencies demand seamless solutions across desktop, laptop and mobile devices. In response, there has been increased adoption of HTML5-formatted ads. While HTML5 ad units are intended to perform seamlessly across platforms, their development requires a distinct skill set and therefore specialized guidance. To support the industry’s implementation of HTML5 ad code, the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) Ad Operations Council and Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence today released “HTML5 for Digital Advertising 1.0: Guidance for Ad Designers & Creative Technologists” for public comment.

“This document is the first step in helping the industry work effectively with HTML5 in the marketplace,” said Cory Hudson, Creative Director, AOL Networks, and IAB HTML5 Working Group Co-Chair. “The broader IAB HTML5 initiative is looking at developing technical solutions and formal HTML5 ad formats and guidelines to address growing needs around HTML5 ad technology. This is a very important and significant program that facilitates the first ever establishment of industry wide best practices in this area. This effort will promote optimal performance, functionality and user experience across devices which benefits designers, vendors, publishers and consumers.”

The “HTML5 for Digital Advertising 1.0” document flags challenges in adopting HTML5, as well as solutions for overcoming those hurdles. It features time and cost-savings guidance, an HTML5 wiki resource for designers and developers, and also addresses:

  • HTML5 display ads (non-rich media)
  • File and ad unit size, code and asset compression
  • In-banner video advertising and animation
  • Efficient ad creative packaging
  • Ad server compatibility communication recommendations

“With multi-screen advertising growing at such a continued rate and increasing in demand daily, it's mandatory that we (as an industry) demonstrate how marketers can strategically and effectively bring HTML5 ad development into the mainstream,” said John Percival, Senior Creative Technologist, PointRoll, and member of the IAB HTML5 Working Group. “As new screens emerge, and people change the way they view and interact with content, advertisers will need a standard ad solution that's ubiquitous in the ever-changing environment.”

“Flash-formatted ads are packaged for delivery to Flash players, and the end-to-end integration is seamless in this proprietary environment. In comparison, when deploying HTML5 ads, some manual packaging is necessary to guarantee superior and complete delivery, as well as a uniform ad experience,” said Steve Sullivan, Vice President, Ad Technology, IAB. “The shift from visual design to code-based design will increase companies’ operational overhead, which could potentially be magnified if publishers and ad developers lack a common framework for HTML5 ad optimization.”

“HTML5’s ability for seamless transition across a multitude of digital screens is a tremendous boon for the interactive advertising community,” said Anna Bager, Vice President and General Manager, Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, IAB. “This guidance offers marketers, creative designers, publishers and other stakeholders in the digital ad ecosystem the practical knowledge required for effective ad creation and distribution.”

To review a copy of the public comment version of “HTML5 for Digital Advertising 1.0: Guidance for Ad Designers & Creative Technologists,” please visit

The deadline for public comment is June 10, 2013. Once the public comment period closes, the IAB Ad Operations Council and Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence will meet to evaluate comments, make any needed changes, and release a final version. Comments are being accepted via email to Jessica Anderson, the IAB lead for this initiative, at [email protected].

About the IAB
The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) is comprised of more than 500 leading media and technology companies that are responsible for selling 86% of online advertising in the United States. On behalf of its members, the IAB is dedicated to the growth of the interactive advertising marketplace, of interactive’s share of total marketing spend, and of its members’ share of total marketing spend. The IAB educates marketers, agencies, media companies and the wider business community about the value of interactive advertising. Working with its member companies, the IAB evaluates and recommends standards and practices and fields critical research on interactive advertising. Founded in 1996, the IAB is headquartered in New York City with a Public Policy office in Washington, D.C. For more information, please visit

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