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Feb 26th 2013

AOL and Vivaki Announce Video Research Findings

As you might remember at Advertising Week 2011, AOL announced a new collaborative partnership with agency holding company VivaKi to revolutionize the future generation of video advertising, creating a personalized interactive video experience that consumers will want to share with their networks.

Through the partnership, we tapped into VivaKi's online video ad research effort called The Pool and worked with the company to innovate and identify top-performing ad models that provide more personalization and social components in the online video user experience.

Today we are excited to announce the results of the research. The year-and-a-half project to research and develop new online video ad units has identified three new formats that we hope to become industry standards to improve the experience for users and advertisers alike. With consumers spending more time watching content online, and a desire from marketers for more premium ad models we look forward to leading the charge on this new initiative.

To learn more about this research read this article from MediaPost.

Feb 5th 2013

AOL's Advertising.com Group Becomes AOL Networks

Today I'm proud to announce to that the Advertising.com Group has officially been renamed AOL Networks. This new brand better aligns with AOL, and should help all of our stakeholders to better understand the rich stack of assets and robust technology we bring together nearly 20,000 publishers and 4,000 advertisers. We believe this new name clearly represents the recognized cross-screen offerings across premium, programmatic and performance advertising.

Since our formation in April 2011, our mission has always been to simplify digital advertising at scale. AOL Networks will continue to offer global advertising solutions that help increase yield through a rich and broad set of platforms, formats, and technologies. We have heard from many clients that there are an increasing number of systems and partners they need to do business with to accomplish their online marketing objectives. AOL is synonymous with premium. And in the network space, there is a real need for premium experiences. With our established leadership in video, performance and now programmatic, plus AOL's foothold in premium advertising, we are better positioned than ever to define and own a transcending solution.

AOL Networks enables the world's top marketers and media brands to reach consumers across desktop, mobile, tablet and connected TVs with impact through premium experiences, programmatic buying and performance driven campaigns. It is the global partner of choice for leading publishers, advertisers and agencies seeking to maximize the value of their online brands.

The brands within AOL Networks will continue to operate under their existing names, including:


Additionally, BuySight, the recently acquired dynamic creative optimization firm, will be packaged into the Advertising.com product suite.

The new gateway, www.aolnetworks.com, launches today, providing publishers and marketers with information on, and access to, all of the offerings in the AOL Networks premium advertising suite.

*Source: comScore December 2012
**Source: comScore December 2012

Oct 3rd 2012

AOL And BBDO Dial it Up on Mobile

AOL recently teamed up with BBDO on a mobile research study, to discover not just what people are doing with their smartphones, but to really understand the reasons why people do what they do on smartphones. We found that 68% of consumer mobile phone use actually occurs in the home, something that may come as a surprise to most. In fact, several insights were uncovered that run counter to the traditional view of how smartphones are used, which shows that there is an untapped value for brands who advertise on mobile devices.

The study, conducted by research firm InsightsNow, took a unique three-phase approach that looked at consumer usage of mobile from a qualitative, quantitative and ethnographic perspective. The study involved smartphone users completing a seven-day diary, making video recordings throughout the day as they used their phones, in-depth interviews, and a survey conducted among 1,000 smartphone users from June to August, 2012.

Arbitron Mobile Trends Panels™ service was then used to track a mobile panel for 30 days to track user behavior and clickstreams in the US, across mobile web, apps and other mobile services. This resulted in a database of other 3,000 mobile interactions or moments which were then segmented according to the needs and motivations of the participants. All of these research methods made it possible to uncover which user needs are fulfilled by a wide variety of mobile interactions.

KEY FINDINGS

Mobile isn't always on the go. In fact, well over half of all mobile interactions measured in the research occur in the home, challenging conventional wisdom.

People use mobile devices for seven main reasons:

  • To Accomplish - managing activities and lifestyle to gain a sense of accomplishment
  • To socialize - active interaction with other people
  • To prepare - active planning in order to be prepared for upcoming activities
  • For Me Time - seeking relaxation and entertainment in order to indulge oneself or pass the time
  • To Discover - seeking news and information
  • To Shop - focusing on finding a product or service
  • To Express Oneself -participating in passions and interests
Me Time is by far the biggest "Mobile Motivation" and accounts for almost half (46%) of all smartphone app and website motivation, averaging 864 minutes per month per user, per Arbitron Mobile.

Mobile advertising performs poorly in Me Time because the vast majority of messages are not relevant to the use at that time, are easy to ignore, or get in the way.

Based on these findings, AOL and BBDO have identified the following recommended actions to help marketers, agencies and brands improve their executions on smartphones:

  • Think about mobile as part of something bigger. Move beyond the conventional surface view of mobile behaviors to align your messaging with the underlying motivators that propel mobile interactions.
  • Focus on "Me Time." Think about ways you can redirect mobile communications to help users indulge and enjoy themselves.
  • Recognize there are other mobile motivations. Targeting communications to capitalize on these motivators can increase engagement.

The research will be revealed today, October 3, at the Mobile Marketing Association's "Smarter Mobile Marketing" Conference which is part of Advertising Week 2012 in New York City.

Oct 2nd 2012

AOL Announces Devil Award Winners At Advertising Week 2012

Now that Advertising Week 2012 is officially underway, Project Devil moved into its third year, and Project Devil 2 has launched, it's time to recognize some of the best Devil executions we've seen since launching Project Devil at Advertising Week in 2010.

Last night at AOL's inaugural Devil Awards we celebrated the best of the best ad executions, proving that brands can achieve a variety of objectives using Devil ad units and applications.

The semifinalists were chosen by a cross-disciplinary team from both the Pictela technology team and AOL Sales team who came together to choose the best ads in each category based on criteria including user engagement, creativity, original use of the Pictela suite of apps and the integration of Devil within a larger, more diverse campaign.

After thousands of votes from the public and industry leaders, the best brands were awarded in various categories to highlight the many capabilities and strengths of Project Devil ads. The five categories included: Best Pages to Parking Lots, Best Supporting Devil, Most Beautiful, Most Engaging and Smartest Devil.

The final winners were chosen by an AOL expert panel of judges and were announced at the event last night. Click on the image below to see the winners' ads, and scroll down to read about each ad:



Pages to Parking Lots Winner: Sprint
This Sprint HTC EVO 4G LTE Devil ad takes the user on a journey from App 1 to App 3. App 1 features a product showcase that highlight the phone's features and selling points. In App 2, users can get to know the phone a little better with multiple images. Users are then shown retail locations in their area and are sent directions to the store in App 3.

Best Supporting Devil Winner: Bank of America
The Bank of America Devil ad unit integrated content in App 1 from their sponsorship of Daily Finance's Savings Experiment program. The ad unit took the content a little bit further by creating a custom application that allowed users to calculate the amount of money they were spending on gas every month.

Most Beautiful Winner: Target
The Target Spring Style 2012 Devil ad unit highlights the beauty of their collection while keeping the background clean and simple, much like the rest of their advertisement aesthetic. The bold colors of their spring collections pop in comparison to the white background of their images and the video in App 2.

Most Engaging Winner: P&G Covergirl
P&G's Covergirl ad unit uses beautiful photos of the product and spokesperson, Drew Barrymore, in App 1. The fast-paced video of the commercial in App 2 grabs the users attention on-spot and the hotspots in App 3 allow users to determine what "TRU" product works best for them.

Smartest Devil: Philadelphia Tourism
The Philadelphia Tourism Devil ad unit uses Smart Apps technology by synching the content displayed in App 1 and App 2. For example, the image in App 1 highlights a specific attraction while App 2 syndicates a piece of art or other picture associated with that site.

Overall Winner: Lionsgate for The Hunger Games
The judges also chose an overall winner who demonstrated criteria from all of the categories. Lionsgate and Initiative were awarded for their Hunger Games Devil ad that ran across Patch sites to drive attendance in theaters across the country. This campaign featured a holistic media plan that drove offline activations, impressive video views and an incredible amount of ticket sales. The work from Lionsgate is also up for a Location Based Advertising and an IAB Standard Rich Media Display Ad award at the IAB MIXX Awards which will be announced tonight, October 2, 2012.

Check out the photos below from the event that was held at Arena NYC, located in the heart of Times Square.

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