Seeking the Holy Grail of Online Advertising

Because online advertising can seem easy at first, many companies go about it the wrong way. Too many people see online advertising in the same way as traditional offline advertising. In the real world a business succeeds partly through making their brand constantly visible, regularly bringing it to the attention of potential customers, through such media as mail shots, flyers, leaflets, business cards, radio and television. But this principle does not apply online in the same way.
Bombarding people with banner adverts and emails will more than likely result in your email address becoming added to spam lists, and rarely seen. Banner adverts are becoming less popular as more and more people use software which filters out banners and adverts on web pages. Instead, tactics such as article distribution, backlinks, reciprocal links, search engine optimization and other techniques help to advertise and promote your business using a form of online advertising more akin to voting.
It is the companies online who are linked to, recommended, promoted and referred to across many different websites who become more visible, rising up the search engine results and being viewed more frequently on Google. Knowing your niche market, and identifying appropriate keywords will help you to tailor your online advertising and promotion to the audience you are trying to reach. With so many millions of people online, it is important that your advertising is designed to target the right people, in the right way, rather than attempting to bombard as many people as possible with your brand.
One of the biggest challenges as far as online advertising is concerned is identifying ways in which you can communicate your message to the right people in ways which will not have your advert either ignored, overlooked or specifically filtered. The problem is that most users have become wise to banners along the top of websites, and vertical skyscraper banners along the side of some pages too. This has resulted in many users developing filtered vision, so that they become unconscious of these adverts.
To overcome this method of not seeing or overlooking adverts, some advertisers have developed adverts which cannot possibly be ignored or overlooked, with flashy colors, vibrant hues and rapid movement designed to grab attention. The trouble is that most of these adverts are embedded on web pages that the user has specifically navigated to for the purpose of finding out information, rather than being bombarded with a carnival of hypnotic gaiety designed to wrestle their eyeballs to the ground and force them to read the advert.
The trouble here is that this often results in resentment – not a good start for anyone attempting to use online advertising to attract customers. Most modern web browsers have the option to filter certain advertisers’ messages and adverts, and if you resort to gross harassment of the peripheral vision, you are likely to find your adverts never even seen.
This begs the question – how can you possibly be successful when it comes to advertising online if an increasing number of visitors have developed the art of blinkered vision for those adverts which are calm and gentle, and actively filter those adverts which jump out in an attempt to grab attention?
The answer is simple – as with all forms of advertising, whether on the internet or in the real world – you have to think along different lines. There are many examples of internet advertising trends which have become hugely successful, and although copying these ideas doesn’t necessarily guarantee success, in some cases they can be worth pursuing, and if nothing else, they serve as examples of the fact that alternatives do exist.
Viral videos or viral advertisements are perhaps the greatest success story in online advertising. This is where a company or business creates what seems to be a spoof advertisement, or simple a very clever one, which has a massive appeal that makes people want to share the video with their friends and family. A hilarious, quirky, weird or thought provoking video, which may not even make it explicitly obvious at first that it is an advert at all, can often find itself receiving millions of hits, and being forwarded and shared across the internet at a rate which no normal advertising medium could possibly hope to match. Although instances of this are rare, they do exist, and are well worth considering.
One of the modern trends in internet technology is the wide range of ways in which people can share links, through website such as del.icio.us, digg.com, stumbleupon.com and network sites such as FaceBook. Finding a way to encourage users to share your adverts, videos and other content through these sites is perhaps the best possible way of promoting your site or services, at relatively little cost. It’s not guaranteed, and does represent something of a gamble, but the benefit of success in this field of online advertising is phenomenal, and unrivaled by any other form of advertising.

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