Out-of-Context Ads Prove Effective

New research casts doubt on the long-held belief that advertising is most effective when placed near content related to the product.

Yahoo! and MediaVest recently studied a group of consumers passionate about a particular subject area. Product ads displayed out of context had roughly the same impact on brand preference as identical placements shown next to related content. >>Full Story

Thoughts// Not the most ground-breaking study, but still some important data about contextual versus behavioral targeting. Logically, behavioral targeting should be a step-up from contextual targeting. Behavioral targeting takes advantage of a person’s interests regardless of what website they may be browsing, while contextual targeting places ads on websites with similar content.

The article does suggest that ‘the long-held belief that ads shown in context are more valuable than those seen out of context‘, which is almost correct. It should note that the ads shown out of context are not merely shown on an unrelated website, but to target consumers on an unrelated website…which is a big difference.

Even with these study results, advertisers should conduct their own research on which type of delivery method produces the best ROI or click-thru rate. In addition, even if your ad is targeted at the right audience, a more important factor may be the creative execution of the ad itself.

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