Pop up ads prove more popular

Since their emergence in early 2001, pop up adverts — those that launch themselves in a new web browser without user input — have grown in popularity.

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By  Matthew Southwell Published  September 19, 2002

Since their emergence in early 2001, pop up adverts — those that launch themselves in a new web browser without user input — have grown in popularity. According to Nielsen//NetRatings, online advertisers generated 11.3 billion impressions with such ads in the first seven months of this year alone.

Pop up adverts are also becoming more common in the Middle East. Companies including MMI, Emirates and ITP have all run pop up campaigns with impressive responses — MMI achieved a click through rate (CTR) of 10.39% on timeoutdubai.com, while ITP Live garnered a CTR of 10.15% for its Dina Carroll concert on the same site.

“Pop ups are a great mechanism when effectively developed and placed. They provide a great opportunity for data capture and can contribute a great deal to a campaign,” says Lee Brett, account executive at online marketing company, Impact Proximity.

However, despite these impressive statistics, pop up adverts account for only 9.2% of all online ads. One reason for this is the targeted nature of the medium. Nielsen//NetRatings, for instance, reports that only 13% of pop up adverts were used to build brand awareness, while 58% were used to drive traffic to a particular web site.

Another reason for their limited distribution is the negative feedback many internet users give them. As they are launched without a web surfers permission, pop up ads disturb a user’s experience and detract from the site they are trying to view.

“It is often the case that this creative media tool is badly utilised and consumers are exposed to the pop up advert every time they log on to a particular site. This can be annoying and can create negative feelings toward the brand and of course the site,” confirms Brett.

However, such concerns appear unlikely to prevent those advertisers already using the format from continuing to do so. “Despite consumers’ general distaste for the ads, a few advertisers clearly view the benefits of pop up advertising as greater than the potential harm to brand image,” says Charles Buchwalter, vice president of client analytics, Nielsen//NetRatings.

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