In a recent Visual Blaze blog posting, where I briefly mentioned the TechCrunch article on the First Quarter decline in online advertising, I wanted to circle back and talk a litte further about it and what it might mean.

TechCrunch Online Ad Revenue Decline

TechCrunch Online Ad Revenue Decline Graphic

I do not find it surprising to see the numbers gradually decline and then during the current economic recession that it drops off the table. The biggest reason for this I believe is that companies were forced to analyze where and how they were spending money to maintain longevity through the current times. Then the conversation goes something to the tune of: “We are spending X amount of money per month on banner ads and pay per click advertising. Do we have the figures that show it is generating revenue?” (In due fairness that line of thinking probably was applied to many business line item expenses like training, printing costs, employees, etc.)

So the recession then caused companies to pull in closer to their vests and not throw money out there into online advertising campaigns that they really could not configure easily. Data driven decision making is key. If impressions and click through rates aren’t tagged into the ROI, then they get dumped. And if those numbers are not there, what ability do we have to try a different strategy. Will a different image, catchier headline, or higher ad placement increase the numbers? Or, perhaps, there isn’t the data to support the ROI from online advertising and different online marketing strategies are being investigated.

So there needs to be a creative strategies to gain attention that tie into data that can then be continually analyzed and allows the strategy to grow and evolve. Just to throw out a couple of replacement techniques:

  • branded Twitter campaign
  • keyword-dense landing pages
  • interactive viral marketing pieces