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Unicast Finds Strong Results with Interactive Video Ads

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Rich-media advertising company Unicast released its first benchmark report, detailing the performance of several types of interactive advertising in the company's campaigns for the first quarter of 2010. Ads with interactive video content proved to be a strong draw.

In getting people to interact with an ad, Unicast found the most success with what it calls messenger units, branded canvases, and video cubes. Messenger units, by far the most successful, are interactive Flash-based ads shown in instant messenger platforms. Branded canvases are video ads that occur during online video programming, and offer more interactivity than standard TV commercials. Video cubes, which are unique to Unicast, are three-dimensional cubes with a different creative element on each side. Viewers can spin the cube and interact with the elements as they choose.

"One thing that surprised me was the findings about messenger units. We knew that those performed well, but we were still encouraged by what we saw," says Dan Berra, Unicast's vice president of business intelligence.

The ad formats that offered the longest viewer engagement times were ads in synchronized banners, messenger units, peel-backs (where the viewer can peel back a page to reveal an ad underneath), and push-downs (where the ad can be expanded and the content of the page is pushed down).

Unicast also found that interactive elements in online advertising, such as videos, quizzes, and polls increased engagement times and interaction rates.

Unicast's report examines 24 vertical industries and 12 different ad formats. Anyone interested can download the full report.

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