Advertisers to shun ‘banner’ ads

Online advertisers will turn away from standard “banner” ads on high-traffic sites, which dominate online ad spend, according to the latest report by leading US Internet research company Jupiter Communications.

Ad agencies will switch spend to sponsorship of Web content and the financing of branded graphic animations. This will help fund the growth in “push media” and benefit online publishers.

Banner advertising, which Jupiter estimates accounts for 80 per cent of online ad spend at present, will decline to 50 per cent of revenue by the year 2001. By that time, one quarter of the growing market in advertiser-funded backing for the Internet will be accounted for by branded sponsorship of particular online editorial content.

The remaining quarter of revenue will be taken by “push media” services, such as Pointcast and BackWeb, which deliver clearly-defined and solicited editorial content to Internet surfers. According to Jupiter, five to ten-second “intermercials”, which fully or partly finance the delivery of push media editorial services, will become increasingly popular.

“Media buys will centre on co-branding deals with well-matched publishers,” the report continues. But it adds: “Advertisers will be drawn to the intrusive nature and high-branding potential of intermercials.”

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