Tuesday, April 22

Engagement, The Old Metric Made New Again

About two months ago, rich media ad network VideoEgg announced they would sell banners on a Cost Per Engagement model (my post regarding that announcement).

Kellogg's is now following the same model for an upcoming campaign. From AdAge:

Starcom's Ad Deal for Kellogg's Hinges on Engagement:
Banner-Ad Campaign Based on Cost per Interaction

At a time when marketers are increasingly relying on engagement as a key metric of the success of an online ad campaign, Publicis Groupe media agency Starcom has brokered an online display-media deal based on cost per interaction rather than the more traditional metric of cost per exposure. The deal was made on behalf of the Kellogg Co. with online ad rep firm Gorilla Nation.

The campaign introduces two new Eggo products, French Toast Waffles and Mini Muffin Tops, to the children's market in a series of rich-media banner ads. The banner ads, placed on sites including Kidzworld.com, feature kid-friendly interactive games such as mashing up foods (chocolate and hot dogs, for example) and measuring how delicious they are.

Considering average rich media banner engagement rates are 5% - 10%, it could be a great payment move by the media sites/networks depending on the pricing model.

It also delivers a much larger results number than CTRs (still between 0.10 - 0.15% on average), which will make clients think their program is more effective. But this could quickly move engagement into the lowest-common metric that CTRs have occupied for the last 10 years for online advertising programs.

It is also nothing new. Rich media networks such as Pointroll and Eyeblaster have been reporting engagement metrics for years.

Also note that the type of sites Kellogg's is on are high engagement already, and targeting kids who would be more likely to interact with ads. Might be different results if they are running on information-focused sites targeting moms.

It's still important to determine what the engagement is achieving, and how it gets tracked down to actual business results. And as "engagement" banners increase in number, expect the engagement rates to decrease. Just like CTRs decreased when more and more banners were shoved online. Remember the good old days when 0.5% CTR was the average?

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