Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Responsive Ads are not a Trend



So, everyone is talking about BigData, RTB, NativeAds, Mobile and video, but no one is talking about Responsive Ads as a trend. I made a compilation of about 15 sites talking about what´s trending on digital advertising, and couldn´t find "Responsive Ads" as a trend.

Let´s go deeper: There are many points and actors involved in this to answer just with a digital trends compilation:

- Planning: Mainly related to Media Agencies
- Technology: This has to do with Publishers websites and AdServers
- Production: Creative Agencies 



- Planning 
This is the point, Media Agencies are planning for different screens, at least in Europe, there´s no the thought of "one for all" yet. So they plan this way:
  1. Desktop
  2. Smartphone
  3. Tablet 

Rarely will you see one placement for all of them. Probably here´s the big jump because this is involving budgets, investments and more. 



- Technology
In terms of technology if you go to the redesigns of well known american sites as  (http://www.usatoday.com/ , http://www.nytimes.com/ , or even http://www.bostonglobe.com/ (one of the greatest examples of Responsive Web Design), you still see those Flash banners there, specially for some positions. You always see the 300x250 and the 728x90. To move to Responsive Creative Design, Ad Technology shall be HTML based. This is not happening.

Why is this? There are some theories:
  1. First and obvious: The industry is not prepared for this. Specially publishers´websites are not ready for this jump. The tendence is to to a Desktop and a Mobile site (Mobile first has not won yet). A Responsive Ad must be inside a responsive Layout.
  2. RTB Ad Technology is based on Flash, usually with strict requirements for formats. Anyway, moving to HTML could be easy. All Ad Cookie system is working also with HTML. We still have to see if Google tries to launch "the Google Ad id".

- Production
Could be the hardest part of it. Designers are used to work with Flash, many of them are already working with HTML, we see it on microsites. Moving to HTML for Display Advertising is quite easy, there are good tools on the market such as GoogleWebDesigner, AdobeEdgeAnimate, just html5 Scratch and so on.

For example in last update from Adobe Edge Animate (CC 2.0), just less than a month, there´s a part about making responsive Ads or microsites. You can find a tutorial on AdobeTV


Also in the blog from Joseph Labrecque, one of the Adobe ingeneers working for Adobe Edge Animate project, you will find info about this

There is also a technology that could come, related to svg. Just see the demo of thi display Ad


See the Pen Snap Display Ad by fernandocomet (@fernandocomet) on CodePen.
In terms of Production this really means a serious change, I would say this is better for programmers than for designeers.

Maybe we shall see a kind of tool to make Responsive Ads the way Froont, Webflow or Adobe Edge Reflow are doing with RWD





- What does the iab says?
Let me give you a little summary of iab  Responsive Design and Ad Creative: An IAB Perspective:

In very broad terms, responsive design today refers to a web design process enabling content (including advertising) to resize, reformat, reorganize, and/or reposition itself in real-time so that it looks good and prioritizes itself to suit the likely needs of a user, based on the screen that user happens to be looking at.

It is important to distinguish between:
• responsive web design (RWD), for web content, and

• responsive creative design (RCD), for advertising creative.

Responsive Creative Design refers to an automated ad server process of optimizing the look and fit of an ad creative to the ad opportunity/ screen/ inventory available.

There are two main ways that responsive creative is being built today.
• Stretch. A responsive creative can use different forms of HTML5 or similar technology to dynamically adjust the size of a creative asset to fit the space available.

• Swap. A responsive creative can be assembled with the server dynamically selecting creative assets from a package of components to suit the ad opportunity.

What is not RCD:
- RCD is not a synonym for “dynamic creative.”
- RCD is not packaging different complete ad creatives in a single tag.
- QA test ads must be done with built using RCD.

- RCD is not moving ad assembly to the client side.

Industry Challenges:
- Ad operations: Planning, Tags, Tracking
- User Experience: Stretch method, Swap method, New Ad Units
- Standards: Still early, Mobile first
- Business models: Integrated sales, non integrated buyers
- Reporting: Inventory and pricing, Metrics by screen size

Implications for Publishers:
- Ad servers
- Ad positioning
- Mobile versus standard landing pages
- RWD and the mobile experience

- RWD and video

And my favourite sentence: "RCD is going to cause disruption".


Interesting articles on Responsive Banners
- Make responsive advertising work for you
- The state of responsive advertising: the publishers' perspective
- Making Advertising Work In A Responsive World
- Responsive Banner Ads with HTML5 and CSS3
- Good examples of RCD
- What Google says about Responsive Ad Units
- Responsive Ads in the Real World: Ad Server Implementation
- Econsultancy - Responsive design: the problem with mobile ads and how it can be overcome
- Responsive Design and Ad Creative: An IAB Perspective
- What every publisher needs to know about responsive web design and advertising... now&how
- Digiday: Responsive Ads are coming
- ThinkGoogle: The New Multi-Screen World Study
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