Location, Location, Location

A new report, "Improving Ad Performance Online," by the Online Publishers Association (OPA), found that advertising effectiveness scores on original content sites (represented by the group's member sites) were numerically higher than on the Web, portals or ad networks.

Sarah Barry James, reporting from SNL, quotes Stuart Schneiderman, director of research for the OPA as saying "One of the biggest questions we get from the marketers and agencies is not only about whether online advertising is an effective branding mechanism or medium, but whether environment matters... "

Key findings show that ads on the OPA member sites had significant effectiveness in raising awareness, creating message association, generating brand favorability and driving purchase intent over portals, ad networks and the overall average.


  • Exposed to an ad on an OPA site, there was a 3.1 percentage point increase in aided brand awareness, a 5.1 percentage point increase in online ad awareness, and a 1.7 percentage point increase in purchase intent.
  • Ads on portals resulted in a 2.1 percentage point increase in aided brand awareness, a 4.5 percentage point increase in online ad awareness and a 0.9 percentage point increase in purchase intent. Ads on ad networks resulted in only a 0.9 percentage point increase in aided brand awareness, a 3.0 percentage point increase in online ad awareness and no significant change in purchase intent.
  • Notably, among 18- to 34-year-olds, users exposed to ads on ad networks were actually less likely to buy the product being shown for having seen the ad. The OPA reported a 1.6 percentage point decrease in purchase intent due to ad network spots.


Ad Effectiveness "Deltas" (Ages 18-34)


Percentage Point Variance by Site Exposure


Aided Brand Awareness

Online Ad Awareness

Message Association

Brand Favorability

Purchase Intent



















Ad networks






Source: OPA, April 2010 (from Dynamic Logic past 3yr campaigns through Q4 2009)

The current report part of a series of OPA reports that leverage independent Dynamic Logic's MarketNorms ® data for measuring online advertising's effectiveness and branding impact, offers additional analysis on ad effectiveness broken down by demographic, product category and the most popular ad unit sizes used on the Web, including key observations such as:


  • 18-34 year olds are more responsive to ads on OPA sites
  • Advertising effectiveness for categories such as CPG, entertainment and telecom was significantly higher on OPA sites than overall MarketNorms especially for the more difficult to move metrics like brand favorability and purchase intent
  • Telecom and travel advertising on portals led to statistically insignificant purchase intent while technology purchase intent on ad networks was also insignificant
  • Ad networks were shown to provide advertisers with the smallest change across ad effectiveness metrics
  • The most popular ad sizes, medium rectangles, leaderboards and wide skyscrapers, perform significantly better on OPA sites than MarketNorms on most metrics
  • Video ad impact on content sites represented by OPA members was greater than the MarketNorms average, and had the greatest impact on purchase intent and awareness metrics
  • Consumers are more involved with interactive ads on OPA sites evidenced by their significantly higher awareness, message association, brand favorability and purchase intent



Pam Horan, president of the OPA, concludes "... placement of your ad does matter, both in its effectiveness and impact with consumers. Well-lit, high quality content sites continue to offer advertisers the opportunity to raise awareness, create message association, drive purchase intent and generate brand favorability..."

The data in this report referred to as overall MarketNorms® refers to the average performance of all online campaigns measured by Dynamic Logic in the last 3 years, including those on branded content sites, portals and ad networks. OPA's membership has an unduplicated audience of 172.5 million unique visitors or 83% reach of the U.S. online population.

For additional information from the Online Publishers Association, please visit here.

2 comments about "Location, Location, Location".
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  1. Joy Joseph from Metriscient, May 10, 2010 at 10:13 p.m.

    This would seem a logical finding- audience involvement would be expected to be higher on original content sites, compared to portals where the audience is usually "in transit".

    Wonder how the effectiveness would hold against actual sales rather than purchase intent.

  2. Juli Schatz from Image Grille, May 26, 2010 at 5:13 p.m.

    Hmmmmm.... an OPA survey found advertising effectiveness higher on OPA-member sites than on the Web, portals or ad networks.

    No bias there, right?

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