April 2011 Archives

We hear it constantly from all sides, “Consumers are spending more time than ever online, and digital advertising is the wave of the future.” We hear this, and yet, it still seems like businesses face obstacles in bringing their promotion online. With research backing the consumer patterns of time spent online, the question we’re left with is not whether advertisers will move dollars from TV to online, but how quickly?

chart2.pngOn April 4, 2011 I debuted findings of IAB research entitled “An Inside Look at Demand-Side Perceptions of Digital Video Advertising.” The study was conducted by Advertiser Perceptions and explored the gating factors to digital advertising at the IAB Digital Video conference. To find the obstacles, researchers gathered 500 agency and marketer decision-makers representing a variety of verticals and asked them about their perceptions. The full results can be viewed here, but here’s a snapshot of the findings:

  • Types of Digital Video Advertising Used Past 12 Months - Overall, the only type of DVA used by a majority of media purchasing professionals (57%) during the past 12 months is Pre-Roll, however the gap between agency respondents (66%) and marketers (36%) is vast. In-banner has been used by more than four in ten (46%), overall, while expandable banner with video (34%) and rich media overlay (34%) have each been used by just over a third of respondents.

  • Types of Digital Video Advertising Will Use in Next 12 Months - The landscape over the next 12 months will not look all that different from the past 12 months; the only type of DVA that respondents will reportedly be used by the majority of media purchasing professionals (58%) is Pre-Roll. The gap between agency respondents (64%) and marketers (42%) is still wide, but narrowing. In-banner (48%), expandable banner with video (40%), and rich media overlay (35%) will all be more widely used, while mobile video (35%) will see some serious growth.

  • The majority of respondents planned to increase digital advertising spend (on average, by about 22%) - Respondents noted increased reach, ROI, and higher engagement levels as their rationale.

  • The majority are likely to migrate a portion of their TV Ads budget to digital video - Overall, respondents noted track-ability, targeting, and efficient spend with less production costs as their rationale. Marketers skewed towards ROI as the reason for the shift, while agencies will shift TV ad dollars to online in an attempt to follow their target audience.

  • The DVA format of choice was a :15 pre-roll on a CPM basis - When forced to select a single favorite or preferred DVA type, not surprisingly, pre-roll, the most used as well as the most planned to use, is the most preferred (30%) holding a two-to-one advantage across the board with all respondent groups over the number two type, expandable banner with video (14%).

Overall, the research supports optimism for DVA in the industry, and highlighted where progress may be slowing. Agencies and marketers believe that digital video may have better ROI and engagement but both alike want more measurability and better metrics. We’re demanding more from our campaigns, and the future is bright for digital advertising.

Suzie Reider is the Advertising Director of Display at YouTube and Co-Chair of the IAB Digital Video Committee.


The IAB has released the second edition of our Prevailing Mobile In-App Ad Formats. This is a summary of a survey of IAB members to assess in-app ad sizes that are currently being sold by publishers and ad networks. While we don’t intend for this document to have the force of an ad format guideline, we do want to help both buyers and sellers understand what ad sizes are popular, and identify key ad size trends as devices and apps evolve.

Version 1 of this document was released in July 2010. For the current iteration, 12 IAB members that sell in-app ads supplied ad sizes. The IAB makes some basic observations based on this rather small data set, as well as offering some broader best practices for in-app advertising.

Findings include:

  • 320x50 seems to be the smartphone banner ad size of choice—many publishers are selling it, and that space can also easily accommodate 300x50s, the other most common smartphone banner size.

  • 300x250 IAB Medium Rectangles are one of the few (perhaps the only) ad sizes available and familiar across phones, tablets, and PCs.

  • Not many publishers are selling “HD screen” smartphone ads (e.g., for Retina Display iOS or similar Android devices) yet.

  • iPad ad sizes are all over the map (30+ distinct sizes being sold by the 12 publishers who participated in the IAB survey), though a couple of IAB Web ad formats have some traction.

iPhone.png 320x50 expandable to full-screen (also shakable) ad for Dunkin Donuts, ran on The Weather Channel’s iPhone app. Source: Medialets.

In addition to the IAB Prevailing In-App Ad Formats (we expect to release results from the upcoming third edition of this survey in July), those interested in in-app ad formats should definitely check out the MMA’s latest ad size standards, which include specifications for some standard in-app ad sizes. Also, the IAB is in planning stages to launch a Rising Stars competition for rich, inventive, brand-friendly mobile ad formats later this year. Stay tuned for more on that.

Joe Laszlo is Deputy Director of the Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, at the IAB.


In my guise as the IAB’s Director of Research, I’ve been talking with TargetSpot about a project they’ve been working on looking at digital audio consumers, their behaviors, reactions to online advertising, and the value of this audience. Having had a preview of the data, I can say that their research findings are really cool, and TargetSpot’s about to release them publicly, via a “road show” event in New York in a couple of weeks.


I think this event is going to be most valuable to agencies and marketers, but the insights in the research are useful and interesting across the industry. TargetSpot’s graciously asked us to invite the IAB community to attend. Here are the details:

Date: Wednesday, April 13
Time: 8:30am-10:30am
Location: Eventi Hotel, 851 6th Ave (b/t 29th and 30th)

Fred Wilson of Union Square Ventures will be delivering opening remarks, discussing how digital audio fits into the USV portfolio among other forays into emerging digital markets.

R.S.V.P. by April 8th to: [email protected]

Joe Laszlo is Deputy Director of the Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence, at the IAB.