Interactive Advertising: Is It Really Worth It?

Have you ever found yourself in this situation? You’re watching TV and a fitness commercial comes on, and you think to yourself, “I should sign up for a gym and start working out tomorrow!” But when tomorrow arrives, you end up going to the pub instead. 

Or maybe you’ve seen a billboard asking for a charitable donation, and you tell yourself that you’ll donate when you get home. But when you do get home, you opt to cook yourself a nice dinner instead.

I think many of us can relate as we’ve all been there, but whether it’s about the gym or a charity, the ads we saw just weren’t effective in getting us to take action. Perhaps it was the content, perhaps it was the time of day, or perhaps another promotional technique would have inspired us to make a move?

Well it turns out, based on research, that interactive advertising might’ve been more effective than non-interactive advertising in such circumstances.

Interaction Requires a Reaction

Interactive advertising is a promotional technique which encourages consumer participation. It’s a form of two-way communication between brand and consumer as it requires the consumer to react.

Researchers discovered that when it comes to building trust a consumer has with a brand, whether the ad was non-interactive or interactive, there was no difference in effectiveness. However, when it comes to motivating people to take action, research suggests that interactive advertising was much more effective.

Can it get me off the couch? Probably!

If an advertisement requires consumers to react, they are more likely to take a personal responsibility for their response & become more actively engaged; the psychological distance between the ad and consumer is reduced.

When consumers react to an interactive ad:

  • There’s an increased level of involvement
  • They tend to see themselves as characters in the ad
  • They’re responding to the ad in real-time

The increased level of engagement creates an immersive experience for consumers, which can lead to a greater willingness to take action in the real world.

So…What Does This Mean for Me?

Does this mean I should replace all my marketing efforts with interactive advertising? Certainly not! Where it makes sense, interactive advertising should complement your marketing efforts:

  • Interactive advertising —Most effective in motivating people to take action (e.g. “Hurry act now, limited time offer”)

Assess your marketing & advertising goals; whether it’s increasing brand awareness, driving more revenue, or acquiring more leads, etc — adding interactive advertising into your advertising mix could prove to be an effective strategy!