Something to Dwell On
Dean Donaldson has a point to make. And he is not shy about it. As Digital Experience Strategist at Eyeblaster, Donaldson is the man behind Eyeblaster's new measurement, Dwell Time. As is well established, everyone hates measuring by the click. People are almost tired of hating the click. The hatred runs deep and it's old. How old? "Blame Netscape," says Donaldson.
Dwell Time is not engagement - for which the analytics can be fairly dicey. At its base, Dwell Time is a measure of how long people spend playing with Eyeblaster's rich-media ads, not just if they've seen them. And people do not have to click away to a microsite or such to be recorded. The Dwell Duration, Time and Rate consider the amount of time the mouse was over an ad, as well as user-initiated video, expansion or other custom interaction duration. Dwell Rate is defined by Eyeblaster as the cumulative instances when a user interacts with the ad divided by served impressions; Dwell Duration is the time users intentionally spend per exposure, discounting times under :06 seconds as accidental. So far Donaldson has monitored 1.5 billion rich media impressions And when drilled down to measure interaction over the course of the day, trends can be seen in the way consumers relate to ads by day-part, and of course content can be targeted in this way.
"Time is a key measure of building a brand," says Donaldson. His research shows that consumers are more willing to engage with brands when they don't have to click away, and will do so for between 15 and 60 seconds longer than they would view a TV spot. A video ad is not dissimilar to a TV ad, says Donaldson (like a true Brit), though when a TV spot airs, "You don't know if someone is off making a cup of tea."