Modern consumers are exposed daily to far more advertisements than they can possibly process.
As a result, their minds come up with ways to cope with the potential sensory overload and eventually reach a place where they instinctively tune ads out when browsing the web.
Savvy marketers are responding to phenomena like these by coming up with ever more innovative ways to get consumers’ attention, like interactive content.
Interactive banners can be especially effective when it comes to encouraging your audience to engage with your brand. Here’s what you need to know to use them wisely.
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What are Interactive Banners?
Most people are so used to traditional banner ads they’ve actually developed a coping mechanism called banner blindness to help their minds filter them out.
As a result, they barely notice them anymore, making it harder than ever for brands to attract attention using methods like these.
Interactive banners, on the other hand, are complex and dynamic. They use color, movement, and visual interest to capture the consumer’s attention before inviting them to actually interact with them.
The result is a banner that’s much less like an ad and a lot more like an experience your audience will enjoy. So not only will they see and engage with your ads, but they’ll actively enjoy doing so.
How Interactive Banners Maximize Engagement Results
A banner ad is a simple, cost-effective way to market a product, service, or brand where it’s most likely to be seen on a website. (Think high-visibility areas like the top, bottom, and sidebars.)
They’re typically also designed to be slim to fit exceptionally well into those spots.
Making a particular banner ad interactive raises the chances of it not only being seen but interacted with, as well.
Here’s a closer look at some of the many ways interactive banners help send a brand’s engagement rates through the roof.
Encourage More Visitors to Engage
Driving traffic to your website is only part of what it takes for your marketing efforts to result in a fatter bottom line.
You need people to engage with your content once they get there. Interactive content — up to and including interactive banners — is a great way to do this.
The more different ways you offer people to engage with you, the more likely they’ll be to find something that catches their interest.
And the more unique and innovative the banner, the more user engagement it will ultimately generate.
Support a Cohesive Brand Image
Digital-age consumers have near limitless options to choose from when it comes to the products and services they buy.
So if digital-age companies want to stand out, they need killer branding strategies that get them noticed and build brand familiarity with their target audience.
However, consumers won’t remember your brand or grow increasingly familiar with it over time if they can’t consistently recognize it when they see it.
Well-orchestrated interactive banners that fit your brand help support this process.
Remember, not all of your future customers will be ready to convert the first time they stumble across your brand.
A cohesive brand image can lead to better brand salience — the likelihood that a consumer will choose you over your competition when they are ready to convert.
Collect and Organize Detailed Data
Although all clickable ads will offer marketers helpful data and insights that can be leveraged to improve future campaigns, interactive options bring a lot more detail to the table.
Among other types of data, your interactive banners can tell you:
- How long a visitor might have spent viewing your ad.
- How exactly they interacted with your ad while they were there.
- Whether they elected to share the content with anyone else.
- Whether they reengaged with the content once they were done.
The more you know about how visitors interact with your interactive banners and other marketing content, the better equipped your marketing team will be to make your next campaign positively out of this world.
Display More Different Products
Traditional static banners really don’t leave much room for possibility when it comes to the products you can display.
You more or less need to decide upfront which options you want to promote and hope for the best once your ad is live.
On the other hand, interactive banners come attached to endless options when it comes to how you display your products.
Use galleries or image carousels to showcase entire collections. Integrate specific products into your ads in unique ways. Be creative!
Boost Clickthrough Rates
The more engaging an ad is, the higher your clickthrough rates (CTR) will be.
Static, lackluster ads just like a million others that are exactly the same are easy to overlook and ignore.
Interactive banners appeal to consumers on an entirely different level. They offer people a chance to play a game, answer interesting questions, or otherwise participate in something fun and enriching.
In fact, it’s easy for people to forget they’re being advertised to at all.
When that happens, clickthrough rates rise. Consumers are also more likely to engage in other ways, such as signing up for mailing lists or completing other calls to action.
Provide Aesthetically Pleasing Experiences
Although it’s certainly possible to design a classic banner ad to be sleek, contemporary, and pleasing to the eye, it still runs the risk of sticking out like a sore thumb.
Well-designed interactive banners, on the other hand, can actually add to the look and feel of a website. Among other things, they can:
- Be designed to blend seamlessly into the content around it for a cohesive feel (similar to native advertising).
- Feel more like games, videos, and other key elements on a web page than ads.
- Add motion, color, beauty, and personality to your page.
The more aesthetically pleasing an ad and the better it blends into the rest of the content around it, the more positively your visitors will react to its presence.
Deliver a Higher Return on Investment
Most digital marketing options are pretty cost-effective, but interactive banner ads deliver an especially high potential return on your original investment.
They don’t cost much more to make than traditional banners. However, they are significantly more effective.
Interactive banners help encourage users to engage by providing a more inviting, less intrusive experience.
Instead of asking the visitor to sit passively and be advertised to, they invite them to participate in a fun, stimulating experience (e.g., a game or a quiz).
The more positive the user experience, the higher the engagement rates and related profit margins — something you can always count on with interactive content of all types in your corner.
3 Examples of Effective Interactive Banners
At this point, you know what sets interactive banners apart from their standard cousins. You’re also aware of the benefits they could bring to your brand if you decide to make them part of your advertising strategy.
Now it’s time to get inspired by some exemplary interactive banner-style ads in action. The following are just a few to take a closer look at.
1. Rock Content
Interactive banners can do a lot more than help a customer remember a physical product the next time they’re faced with a brick-and-mortar buying decision.
They’re wonderful ways to encourage your audience to complete other calls-to-action, as well — like signing up for a company newsletter.
This sleek interactive ad from Rock Content (created with Ion) uses color, animation, and convenience to advertise its official newsletter The Beat, which treats subscribers to news on current marketing trends, expert opinions, and more.
This ad not only engages the user and keeps them on the page long enough to absorb the information, but it makes instant sign-up super simple by letting users do so within the ad itself.
The McDonald’s brand is well-known for its focus on color, fun, tradition, and the ability to make people of every age feel just like kids again.
McDonald’s is also big on nostalgia, a great way to inspire adults who grew up with McDonald’s to make sure their kids do the same.
Interactivity is a perfect fit for a brand like McDonald’s, and this ad for the brand’s iconic Filet-O-Fish sandwich is a great example of how.
The player needs to avoid obstacles to be rewarded with a Filet-O-Fish.
It’s also worth noting that this ad was run to a limited market — people who lived in areas where the Filet-O-Fish sandwich was already super popular.
Advertising — including interactive options — works best when targeted to the correct audience.
3. Wheat Thins
Whether they openly admit it or not, people of all ages love playing games, so it’s not surprising that some of the most successful interactive banners on the web offer viewers this experience.
This simple but fun banner ad from Wheat Thins invited users to fill a virtual party bowl with as many Wheat Thins chips as they could.
To play, the user moved the bowl while the chips “fell” from the top of the banner with increasing speed.
This interactive experience lasted about nine seconds before showing users an attractive display of the brand’s latest and greatest offerings. Fun, simple, and effective!
As you can see, interactive marketing options like interactive banners are more than just a good idea when it comes to your brand-building strategy.
They’re quite literally the way of the future, so the sooner you get your marketing campaign on board, the better.
Ready to dive into putting interactivity to work for you? Check out our write-up on interactive content in marketing.
You’ll get a closer look at the benefits of going interactive, discover which types of interactive content work well, and learn some best practices for incorporating it into your marketing strategy.