Banner advertisements are a proven effective online advertising tool used to promote products, services, events and causes on websites, blogs and even in e-newsletters. Whether you're advertising your services, a new product or a special promotion, placing a well-designed banner ad on a site that your target market visits can attract visibility for your company and increase sales.
Determine what you want to advertise using a banner ad placement. Develop a customer profile that examines the demographics, geographics, psychographics and behaviors of the target audience you're trying to reach. Identify what motivates your target audience to buy, what types of messages attract their attention, and identify what would motivate them to try your product.
Develop a list of objectives for your banner ad campaign. For example, your objective could be to drive traffic to your website to increase your readership, if you have a blog, or if you're selling a product your objective could be to increase the number of sales. Regardless of your objectives, ensure that they are specific, timely and measurable. Determine how you will evaluate whether your ad is successful.
Decide whether your banner ad would be a better fit for a search engine, content site, e-newsletter or product-based website. Make a list of potential sites whose audiences match the customer profile you created. Review the sites to determine their advertising rates and how their advertisements appear on their sites (for example, top, middle, bottom, left or right). Also consider whether your competitors advertise on their sites as well.
Decide on one or more sites to advertise on, depending on your banner ad strategy, and contact their advertising department to schedule your banner ad placement. Ask about discounted pricing for multiple placements. Inquire about the ad specifications so you're aware of the size and format your ad needs to be when you submit it for placement. Arrange to have an advertising contract sent to you that outlines the details of your banner ad placement. Sign it and return it to the advertising department of the site you plan to place your ad.
Work with a graphic designer to create your banner advertisement. Keep it simple and include a call to action such as “Click here” on the banner ad. Incorporate the name of your business or your company logo. Your ad should represent your brand and prompt customers to find out more about what you have to offer. Before you send your advertisement in for placement, test it to ensure that it loads quickly and links to the proper landing page on your site.
Evaluate the results of your banner ad campaign. Measure the click-through rates and conversion rates.
Include alt tags in the html of your banner ad so that people who have their images disabled on online or in email can still get a glimpse of what your advertisement is for.
Test your ad in multiple browsers to ensure that the design is consistent and that it clicks through to right page.
- "Successful Direct Marketing Methods"; Bob Stones and Rob Jacobs; 2007
- "101 Ways to Promote Your Website"; Susan Sweeney; 2006
- Entrepreneur: Checklist - Banner Ad Components
- Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images