hospital web advertising

Hospital Advertising: Click It…Or Not

Even though click-thru rates are down, internet display ads are still effective.

Computer mouse and hand with reflection

According to a study from Comscore and media agency Starcom, the number of people who click display ads has dropped 50% in the last two years.  Only 16% of web users actually click through. And 8% of internet users account for 85% of all clicks.

So does that mean web display advertising is not effective?  The answer is clearly “no”.  Even though click-thrus are down, the study found that display ads generate lift in site visitation and search.  Additionally, consumers exposed to a display ads were 65% more likely to visit the site than users who never saw the ad.  Even after 4 weeks, consumers exposed to display ads are 45% more likely to visit the brand’s site.

So the idea that click-thrus is the real barometer of web advertising effectiveness is erroneous.  Even if a consumer does not click through, just the exposure to the ad can lead to a website visit and engagement.  Banner ads are more effective than what click-thrus indicate.

The study indicated that online users exposed to a particular brand’s display ads are more likely to conduct searches for that brand.  So web display advertising works more like traditional advertising than previously believed.  The exposure to a brand’s ad on the web may not lead to an immediate visit to a website but the impression is made and can effect the consumer’s behavior later.

Combined with paid search, display ads can lead to consumers being twice as likely to conduct an online activity on the advertiser’s site.

Also interesting is that half of all clicks come from lower-income young adults.  Not necessarily the most desired audience for healthcare advertising.

Don’t judge the effectiveness of web banner advertising by the number of click-thrus.  That display ad can be working in the consumer’s mind long after the initial exposure.  


Hospital Marketing: Facebook Wins The Engagement Battle.

facebook logo 2Facebook users spend more time on the site than other social media site.

Since the inception of internet advertising, the key measurement for advertising effectiveness has been the number of unique visitors to a site. The more unique visitors, obviously the more people reached.

But recently advertisers have been considering time spent on the site. Engagement is the concept that is gaining attraction. If a person is on a site for longer periods of time, there is more opportunity for the consumer to see the ads on that site.

Radio has been using this concept for years. They have emphasized, “time spent listening” as a way of selling the level of loyalty the station has among its listeners. The more the consumer is engaged with the site, the more influence the site has on the consumer.

And one of the chief winners of site engagement is Facebook. Facebook is already the fourth largest site in terms of unique visitors with almost 97 million unique monthly visitors trailing only Google, Yahoo, and MSN. But additionally,according to Nielsen Media Research, the average Facebook user spent 5 hours and 46 minutes on the site in August. Yahoo is just over three hours and AOL about two and a half hours. (See chart below).  As an indicative of Facebook’s growth in popularity, the 5 hours per month spent on the site, is up from an hour and 30 minutes a year ago. The more time a consumer spends on the site the longer they have to be exposed to the advertising that appears on the site.

This is a distinct advantage over sites like Google whose goal is to provide the information requested as quickly as possible.

So as you consider web advertising, one factor to consider is the time spent on the website. The more time spent on the site increases the opportunity for the consumer to actually see the ad, and it provides a favorable environment for the ad because the visitor is more committed to the site. Engagement adds value as an advertising option for advertisers.

facebook stats