Online advertising is one of the most effective ways of capturing leads on the web. That being said, it seems as though most methods for paid brand messaging on the web have hit a creative roadblock. One option is PPC which, while highly effective, has stayed the same in terms of features since its inception. Google recently attempted to make its advertising program more engaging by incorporating the +1 button into paid search results. It is still too early to tell if this will change the online advertising world but it is an interesting idea (if people actually use it). Facebook’s “sponsored stories” and Twitter’s “promoted Tweets” try to target people through their social networks with varying success. Then there are banner ads which can appear either at the top or side of a browser window.
Eye-tracking studies have shown that most people have what is referred to as “banner blindness”. What this means is that when an online user searches for something in Google or visits a webpage they intentionally ignore the far right and top portions of their screen thereby avoiding the ads that usually appear there. This is troubling for many businesses that advertise online because it means that even if their ad is being displayed to the relevant people they are ignoring it and will most likely not click on it. While Twitter’s promoted Tweets bypass this trend by placing their ads directly in a user’s newsfeed many other forms of online advertising do not.
Despite the flaws of traditional forms of online advertising they remain relatively unchanged and keep their place in the user’s blind spot. Recently, Solve Media decided to try something new and thereby defeat this troubling trend. They looked for a space in which they could get a large number of impressions without sacrificing the user’s positive online experience. They found that the Captcha codes on many websites were something that, while necessary for site owners, were really annoying to users. Captcha codes are difficult (if not impossible) to decipher but they are accepted as a necessary annoyance. Solve Media decided to kill two birds with one stone. With their new Captcha advertising service they guaranteed advertisers valuable impressions while making an annoying online task more user friendly. This service is still relatively new and has yet to be adopted by many companies but it is a step in the right direction for online ads.