We are familiar with great decline of banner click rates. It’s funny how we now look at a 0.2 percent click rate and think that’s good. There was a funny parody of “Adweek” called SadWeek that appeared when the dot-com bubble burst around 2001. One article was headlined, “Banner Click Rates Drop Below Zero Confounding Marketers and Mathematicians.”
The industry has combated it several ways including research to justify the branding power of banners (which I whole heartily believe in). However, branding clients always agree with a campaign being about the brand until they read their reports. Then, they start to look at things like clicks and action rates.
At our agency, we try to get the client to focus on a campaign’s top-line metrics. We have high CPM banners for branding and online visibility and a wide variety of non-banner placements that tend to get more or cheaper clicks to balance things out.
For example, one buy we do again and again is on a site that sells us all the banners and skyscrapers at mid-range CPMs. Then, as almost a value add, the site throws in millions of text link and button combination units as fixed placements at the bottom of their pages. Then we come in with Google Site Targeted Text Ads that we apply to our media buy from our media budget. As a result, we get the visibility we want from the site with the banners and tons of low cost clicks to bring the cost per click and cost per action from the site way down.