Display Advertising Tricks & Trends | Paid Media Tips

February 02, 2017

6 Minute Read

Display advertising services promise big growth in the coming years. According to eMarketer, display ad spend will reach $31.17 billion in 2016 with projected growth to nearly $47 billion by 2019. The Wall Street Journal predicts a 90% growth between 2014 and 2019.

What do all those numbers mean? There’s a huge opportunity for brand sales and growth with display ads. The platforms for these ads continues to grow beyond the Google Display Network. Display ads also appear on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and on a host of other display ad networks.

Wherever they appear, your display ads need to connect to convert. Whether you create and manage the display ads internally or hire a display advertising services firm, here are 10 tips to maximize your results.

#1. Become one with the platform.

Display ads need to blend into the platform in which they appear. If it’s Facebook, they need to fit the context of the feed with the type of content Facebook users expect to encounter. Yes, the ad needs to stand out, but it shouldn’t come across as a blatant sales effort. The key here is to be relevant and be real.

#2. Take advantage of audience segmentation.

The more you can personalize a message and create a one-to-one marketing feel, the greater the likelihood of big results. Audience segmentation allows you do this. Take a deeper look into your audience and identify the different buyer personas. Then segment these audiences and target each one in way that resonates.

#3. Include discounts.

A well-crafted display ad can leverage discounts to capture attention and draw consumers in. This might seem like an overt sales effort and done poorly it could be. But done well and it grabs interest and expedites the conversion. To do it well requires high quality copy and platform-similar graphics.

#4. Sync the ad’s color.

It might seem small, but color can have a big impact on your message. Color is vitally important as it must be chosen based on the action you want the user to take and on what the buyer persona will respond to. A good graphic designer can help with this element of the ad.

#5. Test. Then test again.

And for what it’s worth, keep testing. Part of BFO’s Engage Process involves constant testing and analysis. Often what you think may resonate with your audience and what does are completely different. Most platforms allow for A/B split tests so you can test graphics, headlines and copy to identify the best one for the campaign. As Faulkner said, “you must kill all your darlings.” Don’t get attached to an idea, let your audience tell you what they want.

#6. Use Google Analytics.

Or better yet, if it makes sense, use Analytics 360 (also called A360). These analytics applications deliver valuable data and insight into customer behavior. They also help to identify paths to conversion enabling you to improve your digital marketing ROI.

So which one is best for you? Well, Google Analytics (the free version) works great for small businesses and low online traffic. For brands with larger traffic (500,000 sessions or more per month), A360 delivers the best result.

#7. Manage when and where ads appear.

Specifically target the times your audience is active and the online “places” they go. If you know your audience doesn’t buy after 9PM, don’t allow the possibility to have ads running after that time. The same goes for location. If your audience doesn’t buy in App, keep your ads from appearing there. This will maximize your ROAS and get the most for your marketing investment.

#8. Have we mentioned mobile?

If ads will appear on mobile devices (and with mobile making up a majority of online interaction, they will!), then make sure to create your ads for mobile devices and mobile audiences. Attractive graphics are important, but so is short, direct and value-laden copy.

#9. Remarketing. Use it.

Make display ads part of your remarketing effort. When a user visits your site, make sure they see your ads after they leave. Again, apply analytics based on user response to know how long to run the ads.

#10. Get on board with programmatic ads.

eMarketer predicts programmatic will make up 72% of display advertising in 2017. Programmatic ad buying matches the data of your target audience with your ad inventory to deliver the appropriate ad format across channels quickly. While at BFO we believe this strategy needs to be blended with human insight and authenticity, it continues to experience double digit growth because it works.

Questions about any of these tips? Or maybe you’d like to better understand the advantages and disadvantages of display advertising services. Possibly you have questions we haven’t even considered. Start a conversation – we’d love to hear from you!

In the meantime, check out our ebook on finding the right agency to help with your paid media efforts.

Scott Diebel - Senior Paid Media Account Manager

Scott Diebel

Scott began his career in digital marketing after setting out to join a small business right out of college. Scott was excited to join BFO when they acquired his startup in 2016 and has enjoyed making an impact on a larger scale ever since.