3 Ad Types to Add to Your Digital Strategy This Year

Posted by Suzanne Kammer on March 1, 2016
0 Flares 0 Flares ×

According to ComScore, Internet users see an average of 1,707 ads per month. Now, more than ever, digital marketers struggle to get their ads noticed online. How can you stand out from your competition, encourage engagement, and improve your brand? By building more effective ads, of course. And how do you do that? You can start by exploring these three trending ad types for your digital strategy:


You’ve heard it before: if you’re not on mobile, you’re nowhere.
Let’s put this into perspective with some quick stats:

  1. There were 3.65 billion unique global mobile users in 2015, with 1.91 billion owning smartphones (Source: Marketing Land)
  2. According to eMarketer, $17.5 billion will be spent to reach individuals on mobile this year.
  3. When it comes to total digital media time spent, mobile platforms account for 60% (Source: ComScore)

Still need some convincing? Consider this:

  1. 91% of adults have their mobile phone within arm’s reach 24/7 (Source: HubSpot)
  2. 9 out of 10 mobile searches lead to action, and over half lead to purchase (Source: HubSpot)
  3. Mobile ads perform 4-5x better than online ads in key metrics such as brand favorability, awareness and purchase intent (Source: HubSpot)

If you still haven’t incorporated mobile into your digital marketing efforts, remember that hundreds of successful, recognizable brands are already using mobile ads as part of their online strategy.

ad types ad types ad types ad types

It’s a no brainer, if you want to be where your audience is, you need to be on mobile. After all, your competitors are already there.

Rich Media

While standard display ads yield a CTR of 0.12%, rich media ads deliver a 0.44% average CTR (Source: eMarketer). That’s a 267% increase that you can’t afford to miss out on! With so many types of rich media ads, there’s no excuse for you to leave it out of your digital strategy.

Rich media ads also beat standard display ads when it comes to engagement. Why? For starters, they are interactive, include animation, or have video elements. Rich media ads are also typically more intrusive and ‘loud’, making it for them to go unnoticed. Not sure what type of rich media ads to include in your strategy? If you want to stay ahead of the curve, IAB’s Rising Stars are a good place to start.

 Rising star ads yield the following results:

  1. 5x more likely to interact
  2. 2x more time spent interacting
  3. 31% longer ad viewing time

Source: Marketing Land

Pushdowns and billboards are the most effective of the rising star ads. A billboard is placed at the very top of the user’s browser and spans the entire width of the publisher’s page. The viewer is in control of their advertising exposure, as the billboard provides a ‘close ad’ option, which removes it from their browsing experience entirely. Billboards are highly interactive, include videos and are hard to ignore.

ad types

As the name suggests, a pushdown ad expands and ‘pushes down’ to deliver the full advertisement when a user interacts with it. With a visual toolbar that allows the user to engage with the content, it’s no wonder these ads deliver a 338% higher interaction time. You can check out this example from Ford here.

If engagement, interactivity and positive brand awareness are key goals for your digital strategy, you’ll definitely want to incorporate rich media into your advertising.

Tip: Don’t forget to leverage HTML in your rich media ad designs.


While online users are getting better at recognizing (and ignoring) ads, marketers need to look for new ways to engage their audience. Enter native advertising. Native ads differ from the traditional banner ad in that they appear more as editorial content rather than an advertisement. They blend into the content on a webpage and offer relevant material to viewers. While online users can sometimes be skeptical about clicking on ads, they’re much more inclined to click on what appears to be credible, useful content.

While reading an article on ’30 Foods You Should Never Eat After 30’ on msn.com, you may encounter native ads such as the one below. The content is relevant to the article being read, following the health theme. While still an advertisement, this native ad is masked as useful content related to the reader’s interests.

ad types

Using the WhatRunsWhere advertiser search, you can see what kinds of native ads your competitors are running to give you a better idea of what kind of content resonates best with your target audience.

ad types

So why include native ads in your digital strategy?

  1. Native ads are viewed 53% more than traditional banner ads (Source: HubSpot)
  2. Purchase intent is 53% higher with native ads (Source: Dedicated Media)
  3. Native ads can improve brand lift by 82% (Source: Forbes)

Don’t limit yourself to traditional banner ads for 2016. Stay ahead of the curve and give some new ad types a try. Want to really shake things up? Combine the three above ad types to create even more effective ads. Why not run mobile native ads? Or try incorporating rich media into your native ads. If you’re really daring, you can try rich media native ads on mobile.

Have you seen success with any of the above ad types? Let us know what’s working for you in the comments section below.


Topics: Digital Strategy, Digital Advertising, Native Advertising, Online Strategy, Rich Media Ads, Mobile, Mobile Marketing, digital marketing, Mobile Advertising


Leave a Reply