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Display advertising generates demand; search advertising fulfills demand December 14, 2008

Posted by jeremyliew in advertising.

I’ve been meaning to write up a summary of the new Comscore whitepaper, Whither the Click?, which outlines the findings of their research on the effectiveness of display advertising. But as Fred Wilson did an excellent job, I’d suggest that readers just read that.

The punchline is that display advertising meaningfully increased the likelihood of internet users who saw that ad search for the product advertised, visit the product’s website, and buy the product advertised over the four week period following exposure:

It’s clear that display advertising, despite a lack of clicks, can have a significant positive impact on:
– Visitation to the advertiser’s Web site (lift of at least 46% over a four week period)
– The likelihood of consumers conducting a search query using the advertiser’s branded terms (a lift of at least 38% over a four week period)
– Consumers’ likelihood of buying the advertised brand online (an average 27% lift in online sales)
– Consumers’ likelihood of buying at the advertiser’s retail store (an average lift of 17%)

This is pretty stunning news. It means that banner advertising actually GENERATES demand for a product (by increasing search and visits to a website over a control group).

Read Fred Wilson’s summary of why display advertising works.


1. Nick Gonzalez - December 15, 2008

I think 5 years of Google adsense and adwords brainwashed journalists into thinking clicks are all that counts. If that were true, some of the most successful campaigns would be blank ads.

2. Debra Freligh - December 16, 2008

According to the CIA World Fact Book, there are currently 223 Million Internet users in the US.

I think it is important to plug in that number before determining which methodolgy is most accurate for measuring the percentrages of exactly how many people are using the interent and where they are headed.

3. Ted Howard - December 19, 2008

It’s obviously biased towards promoting what they sell, but the first such research I remember seeing was from the Atlas team (now at MSFT). Keeping the bias in mind, it’s probably worth a quick read for those interested.

4. gregorylent - December 21, 2008

i don’t believe the research…

5. Web Display Advertising Inexorably Moving to Full-Blown Brand Advertising » Dogster Inc. Company Blog - January 14, 2009

[…] big brains Jeremy Liew and Fred Wilson alerted us to a free comScore white paper (free download) that reports on the […]

6. Career | Male Nurse - January 28, 2009

It actually depends on what is being displayed on the ads. This conclusion cannot be generalized on all banner display ads.

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