So, across the marketing and new media blogosphere, everyone is weighing in on Google Placement ads (aka Content Networks).
While the verdict is still out for many web ad “experts,” I see this as a huge opportunity for advertisers and a GIANT shift in how we gauge awareness advertising.
For a little recap, there are 2 basic forms of advertising: Awareness and Direct response. TV, for example, is all about making people aware of a product or service. Direct mail, on the other hand, elicits a direct response (usually measured as percentage).
The two forms are distinct.
Google’s placement ads combine the 2 forms, awareness and response, for the first time ever. So imagine banner ads, served on targeted websites, at VERY LOW cost-per-thousand.
Even if the consumer doesn’t “click” the ad, you’re still creating awareness. If the consumer clicks the ad, then you can measure the direct response. Brilliant!!!!
Right? Hold on, not so fast.
Direct mail remains the biggest single type of advertising in the US. Companies can get comfy with the ROI of direct mail. After all, more than 50% of all ad dollars are spent on it. Why? Small business owners do not generally understand the principle of “awareness drives response,” so they load up on things like direct mail.
Google is now one of the biggest companies around, built on pay-per-click ads and the same principle behind direct mail….it’s measurable and people feel comfy with it. So, when the Big G branches out into awareness type ads, like Placement, it’s a hard concept for some marketers to grasp.