Tuesday, November 27, 2007

How to Improve Online Advertising

According to this article in vnunet.com of the UK, online advertising has not taken hold of online shoppers as more and more people favor reviews written by customers to help them shape their decisions. This probably surprises nobody in the marketing world since online advertising is generally used to help build a brand and awareness by reaching an appropriate audience across multiple sites. So while persuading people to buy one's product via online advertising is important, it's usually more important, traditionally, for online advertising to prime customers over time.

But perhaps we now need to look at online advertising in a new light. Perhaps this study shows that if companies do want people to react to their online ads, then the ads themselves need to be updated to modern standards. What I'm getting at here is-- why not promote your customer reviews in your online ads?

For example... Looking to advertise your latest solar powered toaster?

Well, try building an ad that automatically uploads the latest customer reviews on this magnificent product into the content of the ad. Not only would this encourage people to click on the ad and find out more about the product (since the reviews are what people want to see in the first place), but it would also encourage customers to write up reviews since their message would be displayed in ads across the internet... call it 15 minutes of internet fame. Of course you would have to monitor the comments for appropriateness and regulate the reviewers by only allowing registered shoppers to post a review to avoid spam and other anonymous rants, but it's a small price to pay to enable your biggest fans to support your product.

Call it Online Advertising 2.0 or whatever you fancy, but the fact is that delivering the right message-- in this case customer reviews-- to prospective customers will become more important to generate sales via online ads in the future.

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