Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Monday, November 20, 2021

God bless Denmark. First, the little Nordic nation gives the world Legos, and it follows that up now with speed limit signs waved about by topless women.

I see a clear progression. Don’t you?

(Via Execupundit.com)

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 11/20/2006 11:36 PM
Category: Comedy
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How often do Web users click on ads? When it comes to banners, it’s more of a look-but-don’t-touch:

About a third of consumers sometimes click on banner advertisements on the Web. But twice as many consumers sometimes respond to such ads indirectly, avoiding clicking on them but later visiting the Web sites advertised, according to a survey by DoubleClick, an online marketing-software company. 6,121 adults were surveyed in July via an online panel adjusted to reflect the Internet-using population.

The finding suggests that consumers prefer to reach sites on their own, rather than by linking through advertisements. “People are engaged in the content they’re looking at the time that they’re exposed to the ad, and they don’t want to navigate off the page,” said Rick Bruner, DoubleClick’s director of research.

Here’s the big caveat: DoubleClick’s bread-and-butter is display Web advertising, versus the cost-per-click (CPC) that’s the basis of Google’s AdSense network. With more mainstream awareness of the click fraud problem, this certainly represents a piling-on by Google’s advertising competitors.

Still, even taking that into account, I don’t discount these survey findings. Fact is, I’ve argued that CPC’s false promise obscures online advertising’s basic mission:

[T]he obsession with clickthrus as the defining metric disregards the more old-fashioned effectiveness of advertising: Exposure. Getting a logo, slogan and other messaging in front of eyeballs is just as vital as active user response. Probably more, actually: It implants brand retention that can carry over during visits to the grocery store and other points of purchase. The idea that an ad “fails” because it doesn’t prompt immediate purchase ignores this tried and true ad behavior. The lack of precise trackability is the only thing that detracts, and that’s more a deficiency of the Web as a media channel than anything else.

That function is validated in the survey findings. Even if users don’t clickthru at the moment of ad impression — even if they never visit the delivered link — the ad message still registers mentally, just as a television or print ad would. Clicking through later, if it does occur, feeds into the idea of increased user control: I’ll take my browser where I want, when I want. Overall, it’s a situation where base impressions count for more than click-tracking.

Moreover, this further underlines the ultimate unsustainability of the CPC model:

Which makes me wonder how long it’ll take before the clickthru model for online ad revenue gets tossed out the window. It doesn’t make much sense, anyway. Clickthru offers the illusion of advertising-and-transaction tracking, but really it doesn’t — it just spits back a metric on the initial gateway action toward a strictly potential online purchase. Factor in accidental clicks and just plain tire-kickers, and the notion that clickthrus represent real advertising effectiveness becomes awfully shaky.

Truthfully, clickthrus represent merely the fervent desire by advertisers, marketers and syndicates to see some solid linkage between Web exposure and sales. There undoubtedly is — I’m sure a percentage of those clicks brings in immediate revenue. But it’s never going to be the majority. Online tracking is going to have to get a lot more robust before this dream is realized.

As I mentioned, this isn’t the best news for Google. CPC has been its calling card, and was a big part of how it redefined how the entire online ad market works. Google isn’t standing still — it offers the traditional cost-per-thousand (CPM) impression advertising, along with other CPC alternatives. As click fraud becomes more frequent and just as hard to guard against, Google may have to set the industry pace again by moving away from the advertising model it built with such success.

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 11/20/2006 10:47 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., Internet
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Well, color me bummed.

Today, I wore my blue penguin-patterned tie from Banana Republic, which I just bought this weekend. I was charmed by its understated whimsy, and figured a few co-workers would be as well.

Instead, nada. No one noticed, or if they did they didn’t indicate it. I left the office thinking that my attempt at sartorial fun had fallen flat. (That, or they were sick of all things penguin thanks to that pervasively-marketed Happy Feet movie — which, despite sensorally fatiguing me as well, probably had something to do with all this.)

Then, on the subway ride home, some little boy sitting across from me (I was standing) got a gander at me, pointed, and declared to his mother, “He’s got penguins!”

Mom couldn’t figure it out at first. I offered up, “Your son’s got sharp eyes.” And then she focused her own eyes, and noticed the birds on my neckwear. She congratulated her son on spotting the minute detail that her older peepers couldn’t detect without concentration.

From that, I realized that the penguins went unnoticed at the office because they were too subtle a visual for the average adult to key in on. But kids can pick it up fine.

So I’ve decided to don this same tie on Thursday, when I’ll be having Thanksgiving with family that includes a couple of members in the 5-years-old-and-under set. They should get a kick out of it — and by gosh, someone should (besides me).

by Costa Tsiokos, Mon 11/20/2006 09:27 PM
Category: Fashion, Movies
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