IAB Package Aims To Simplify Online Advertising

By: Ann Mack

(Adweek IQ) The Interactive Advertising Bureau’s Ad Sizes Committee Wednesday unveiled a Universal Ad Package that is intended to make online advertising as simple to plan and implement as TV or print. It was created in response to advertiser demand for more cost-effective units and a strong creative pallette.

The ad package is made up of three existing, IAB-recommended ad sizes and a new larger sized unit. The new unit, the 728 x 90 pixel Interactive Messaging Unit (IMU), provides an expansive horizontal lens through which consumers can view products and brands online. The other formats include the 160 x 600 pixel skyscraper, which like the 728 x 90 unit, is meant to sit on the perimeter of the page, and the 180 x 150 rectangle and 300 x 250 medium rectangle that feature similar proportions to TV. The Universal Ad Package also features guidelines for standard file weights, formats, animation length and audio.

AOL, MSN, Yahoo, CNet Networks, iVillage, CBS Marketwatch, and New York Times Digital are among the Web properties that have already agreed to offer the Universal Ad Package.

The IAB’s recommendations were based on customer feedback, usability studies, and performance tests. According to research conducted by Marketing Evolution’s Rex Briggs, “the larger format sizes, which are naturally more visible and provide more creative freedom, did prove to be significantly more effective than smaller, standard banners across all campaigns.”

Feedback on the ad package is welcome at http://www.iab.net/standards/adsizes.asp.

“This initiative … is intended to answer advertisers’ requests for a limited, core set of compelling ad units to create and plan online campaigns that will be able to run across the majority of Web sites and users. It will also enable publishers, regardless of size or niche, a common palette with which to attract advertisers and agencies, providing the framework for integrated campaigns across the Internet,” said Jeff Bernstein, director of MSN ad planning and chairman of the IAB Ad Sizes Committee.

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