The death of rich media.


Liam Walsh Writes:

So a question to ponder: In five years’ time will we still say ‘rich media’?

I feel the answer is no. I can’t really see anybody saying the word ‘rich’ in any context at all in 2013 except maybe when they were casting their memories back to 2007.

But for those people still employed in 2013, the idea that we would make a distinction between rich and normal media for advertising will be archaic and a waste of time.

All display media is just media and the distinction and separation of rich from normal is no longer valid. The only thing keeping it distinct is the pricing model on adserving the material.

We have seen standard adserving decline around 90% in 4 years. Rich media has declined around 50% but is still typically about 500-3000% more than regular adserving .  Meanwhile wholesale bandwidth has declined 80% in two years.

This is not a whinge about high prices for rich media. It is an argument that rich media will be the default position and it will only be erectile dysfunction and iphone applications advertisers that use gifs and simple flash creative.

The discussion around whether it is 5 years or 4 or 3 is largely irrelevant. Because mostly this pricing issue can go away if the agency groups roll out of bed and put a case for all messaging being rich media and for their adserving partners to stop gouging them.

It is the likes of ninemsn, News Limited and Fairfax that have been most vocal about branding online. The dramatic reduction in bandwidth costs may well do more than any other development in online advertising for shifting advertising dollars out of more traditional media channels. 

Ben Shepherd writes:

For mine, I think the term rich media is already redundant. 95% of our campaigns we run in rich formats (ie 1mb Eyeblaster polite or expanding executions) and clients are already aware of the benefits of the format and creatives are already building to it.

Many of the obstacles to running rich media are also being knocked down. Initially publishers were the problem – many had loadings they would apply (some as large as 35%) if an advertiser wanted to run rich medla (and that was 35% on the CPM … so if you were running in a $10cpm placement it’d be an extra $3.50 … if it was a $60 environment it’d be another $20+). Some networks wouldn’t run any more than 1 rich media campaign per environment per time period … which always made no sense to me but you can’t really argue with producers when you’re a sales guy can you …

The key consideration is still price however. To run rich media campaigns costs (in terms of ad serving cost) 500-900% more than running standard (and by standard I mean 60kb polite) executions. In terms of ad serving on a moderate weight campaign this can be a $5-7 thousand dollar difference.

Expanding, for instance, costs around 8x to serve as a standard execution. On top of this they generally cost a lot more to build. What we need to think about is whether this cost is generating better results and whether it scales correctly.

Personally, I think the real battleground for the adservers isn’t around rich pricing (although it could come down and really should) … it’ll be around reporting depth and relevance. Atlas has definitely raised the bar with their engagement mapping software … just like Eyeblaster raised the bar years ago with their interface. For advertisers, they want deeper and more relevant data about what causes reactions, at what time, in which placements and how all of these relate across multiple ad impressions in various formats.

On top of this, it is perhaps time for publishers to get together and explore adding some ad units or standardising more complex executions across sites. If we’re serious – really serious – about branding online, perhaps we need a few more ad units than the same ones that run across EVERY SINGLE PAGE of the internet. Just a thought …

Case in point – I briefed out a mobile campaign to 3 different groups and received completely different specs for all of them. Effectively it meant I had to recommend a client build 17 different ad units for what only represented around 10% of the total campaign. C’mon guys …

 

 

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2 responses to “The death of rich media.

  1. interesting topic but i think that it needs to be put into

    not all communications need to be complicated. in fact some are way better off being kept simple. as such there may not be a need for rich media

    creative such as media planning neds to relate back to marketing objectives, the issue shouldnt be standard vs rich it should simply be about the value and importance of the message.

    i dont see why ppl plan cheap ad networks with no thought of creative in mind. some simply have a CPC approach.

    conversely i dont know how clients can justfiy large spends but not build sufficient creative. i understand that

  2. interesting topic but i think that it needs to be put into context

    not all communications need to be complicated. in fact some are way better off being kept simple. as such there may not be a need for rich media

    creative AND media planning needs to relate back to marketing objectives, in this case the issue shouldnt be standard vs rich, it should simply be about the value and importance of the message.

    i dont see why ppl plan cheap ad networks with no thought of creative in mind. some simply have a CPC approach.

    also i dont know how ppl can justfiy large spends but not build sufficient creative. i understand that rich media adds $ to the campaign but realisticlly its as little a few dollars on top of the CPM. its a mere fraction of the overall campaign spend.

    i think that its pyschologolically easier for a client to sign off on if it was a cost that was accounted for by the publishers. it would add a dollar or two on the CPM but the overall effect(dependant on factors) is usually more than enough to justify it. this would be a grat way of normalising the use of rich media as its simply a standard part of the buy.

    the only thing left is the cost of rich media from a creative agecny perspective but i cant comment on that as i honeslty dont know enough about how they charge.

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