Demand for engagement is fuelling growth in less intrusive formats

Although many brands still feel the need to shout the loudest to stand out in a highly competitive digital landscape, recent insight from digital brand experts Collective reveals a sharp rise in demand for less intrusive formats.

Collective’s strategy director Paul Lowrey puts this continuing trend down to a realisation that standing out and engaging consumers isn’t always about shouting the loudest any longer.

“Standout is something that advertisers have always strived for, but with the growth of ad blocking, initiatives such as the IAB’s LEAN programme to promote a better user experience are gathering momentum,” he said. “Consequently, we’ve experienced a major growth in new formats that are less intrusive and disruptive to the user.”

One particular new format, Brand RISE, is proving particularly popular among the brands Collective works with due to its effectiveness.

“Brand RISE has two key elements. It delivers initial standout with a brief two to three-second animated brand experience across just 30-40% of the page – enough to make the user aware of the proposition, but short enough to not interrupt their viewing experience,” explained Lowrey. “The intro then disappears to a non-invasive ‘sticky banner’, which upon user engagement launches additional rich media content, including video, product carousels and imagery.”

Over 30 clients across a range of categories, from automotive to FMCG, have so far taken advantage of this format with success demonstrated from strong engagement rates and audience interactions.

The growth of formats such as Brand RISE are part of a wider product roadmap built from advertiser feedback and in response to market trends.

Collective says that by gaining a greater understanding of how content is delivered and consumed, it will enable them to refine the effectiveness of campaigns further, not only make them less disruptive but also more interesting and relevant, boosting engagement and improving the customer experience.

Collective’s Managing Director Giles Ivey, added: “We strive very hard to work with publishers to deliver the most compelling advertising in the right place. While we support the LEAN initiative, it focuses on formats rather than best practice. For example, we often get positive feedback about impactful ads from consumers, so it’s likely that things like frequency are what get people running for their ad blockers, not formats. This is probably the biggest thing that an initiative like LEAN, and the publishing community, needs to focus on.”