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Proven Rich-Media Strategies for Your 2011 Campaigns

In this report you will learn:


Trends, tips, and examples for results-driven rich-media marketing strategies, as well as how to put them into action in a successful campaign. Driving Mobile Marketing Results Maximizing Online Ad Performance Increasing Site Engagement and Conversion Campaign Action Plan

February 2011

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3 Proven Rich-Media Strategies for Your 2011 Campaigns


A new era of digital marketing is underway, marked by new connected devices, faster networks, and a sense of combined chaos and opportunity. The importance of content continues to grow and the definition of content, particularly in the marketing realm, expands further every day. Static advertising messages have given way to interactive, digital experiences that rely on rich media to communicate and engage with audiences. There are challenges in this new, more-complex approach to marketing, but there are also huge rewards. This report examines three of the most powerful ways to use rich media for marketing: what they mean, why they work, and how to use them to drive your own campaign success.

Driving Mobile Marketing Results


In the first section of our report, we look at cross-platform marketing, and how to deliver rich media to mobile audiences. This section examines the mobile marketing strategies we already know are working today, and offers five recommendations for driving the highest results from your mobile outreach. From apps to ads, and mobile websites, these are the tips and trends you cant afford to ignore. Go to page 3

Maximizing Online Ad Performance


The second section of our report drills down specifically on the subject of online advertising. As quickly as media entertainment is evolving, so too is rich-media advertising. Yet there is still some trepidation among advertisers about how to make the most of the new opportunities available. How do you create an interactive ad that is useful, engaging, and performs well in multiple environments? The focus needs to be on three key elements: understanding the experience you want to create, reaching a wide audience, and measuring results with a sophisticated eye toward ongoing optimization. Go to page 10

Increasing Site Engagement and Conversion


In the third section of our report, we look at company website strategies, and how to balance creativity and efficiency in your online presence. Not only is it possible to get creative without sacrificing performance, its possible to deliver a quality experience without breaking the bank. You need to know first what elements contribute to the quality of your site, and second how to create a system that maximizes your resources for the highest levels of efficiency. Go to page 15

Campaign Action Plan


The final section here examines strategic considerations for using all of the potential tactics at your disposal to create successful marketing campaigns. This includes picking the right tactics to invest in, putting them together in an integrated campaign, and measuring results so you can optimize your marketing over time. Go to page 19

Beyond Buffering: 3 Proven Rich-Media Strategies for Your 2011 Campaigns

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Driving Mobile Marketing Results


If youve been ignoring mobile audiences, you cant afford to any longer. More than 80 percent of Americans own mobile phones today, and more than 50 percent of those phones will be connected to the Internet by the end of 2011. The smartphone explosion means consumers are doing more online and accessing more rich media without turning to a PC. Among consumers aged 18 to 29, 65 percent already access the Internet on a mobile device.1 Its an audience you dont want to miss.

35%

65%

For digital marketers, mobility represents both an opportunity and a threat. On the one hand, you can now reach audiences when and where its convenient for them, which makes consumers more likely to respond to your outreach. On the other hand, mobility may threaten more traditional marketing strategies, because it opens up a new front where consumers are engaging withand making judgments onyour brand. Imagine a retail outlet with steady in-store traffic, a successful website, regular online ad campaigns, and a well-managed email marketing program that has expanded the companys audience and deepened relationships with existing customers. Now imagine that a quarter of its customers upgrade to new smartphones over the course of a year. If the companys marketing content isnt optimized for mobile access, the impact on its customer base will be profoundly negative. Ads that arent visible are wasted money, while rich-media website features and marketing emails that arent accessible or user-friendly can actually create negative brand impressionsturning consumers, directly or indirectly, to a competitors offerings. To fill out the mobile landscape further, consider the importance ofand, more specifically, the increased return rates that stem fromusing rich media in outreach efforts. Consumers enjoy rich media and are increasingly accessing multimedia content on their mobile devices. In the U.S., the time spent viewing video on a mobile device is already approaching the time spent viewing video online on a desktop computer. More importantly, rich media on any type of connected device has proven not only popular, but highly effective for marketing purposes. According to a June 2010 report by Dynamic Logic, video does the most of any online ad format to raise consumer purchase intent.2 Its an increasingly valuable tool for improving online user engagement.

Among consumers aged 18 to 29, 65 percent already access the Internet on a mobile device.
(Source: Pew Research Centers Internet & American Life Project, 2010)

According to a June 2010 report by Dynamic Logic, video does the most of any online ad format to raise consumer purchase intent.

Heres What We Know Is Working


Despite clear indications of the importance of mobile marketing, the industry has been slow to respond to new content consumption trends. While many have gotten on board with using rich media to market products and services, few have taken their efforts mobile. Marketers are more than a little gun-shy, given the complexity of mobile delivery and the fact that results data is still limited. To ease concerns, were offering five recommendations for driving the highest results from your mobile outreach. In other words, heres what we already know is working. These recommendations are based on real-world findings and illustrate proven strategies that successful companies are using to reach mobile audiences. They arent applicable to every campaign, but they do provide insight into effective mobile marketing techniques.

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#1: Timing is EverythingMarket During a Live Event


One of the great benefits of the smartphone is user participation in events as they happen. Need a sports score? Election update? A peek at the latest gadget as its launched online? Smartphones make it possible, drawing in audiences that might otherwise remain offline and disconnected. Because of this, live events offer a unique opportunity to target mobile audiences with rich-media advertising. As consumers turn to their phones on a regular basis for online content, there is no better way to capture a huge audience than to latch onto a compelling live event. Case in point: the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver. If audience fragmentation is a concern, an event like the Olympics is an ideal channel for your mobile strategy. NBC Universal increased its mobile coverage of the Olympics significantly in 2010 through both its mobile site and a mobile iTunes app. It was a potential risk, but the networks optimism was quickly borne out. Mobile video views increased more than 600 percent over the Beijing Olympics in 2008, indicating that audiences were engaged with the events from their mobile devices in an entirely new way. Not only that, but a large number of advertisers recognized the burgeoning mobile opportunity, causing NBC to sell out of mobile ad inventory before the Olympic Games had even begun. In addition to the audience draw of such a big event, the massive support levels involved in the Olympics provided smooth ground for testing a mobile campaign. NBC Universal, for example, made it easy for advertisers to create content once and have it distributed effectively and efficiently across a multitude of mobile devices. This multi-platform approach was likely the first opportunity many advertisers had had to reach audiences on a wide variety of mobile devices and mobile operating systems. If youre worried about having to create an ad that will work on the numerous smartphones and tablets now available, it helps to be able to turn over that technical complexity to a team of experts.

NBCU sold out its entire mobile ad inventory early for the Vancouver Olympics.

#2: Take Advantage of the Latest and Greatest


Although the goal of most advertising is to reach as many people as possible, you never want to sink to the lowest common denominator in your mobile campaigns. The Apple iPad provides a rich new landscape for digital marketing, with the opportunity to create visually stunning ads full of multimedia content. Because the iPad has such a large touch screen, its also ripe for ads that support heavy user interaction. While not all iPad ads will translate well to other devices, early data shows that strong return rates can still make iPad-only advertising sufficiently worthwhile. In one of the first in-browser rich-media ads for the iPad, the SyFy channel ran a one-day campaign with The New York Times in July 2010 for its show Warehouse 13. Using HTML5, the ad incorporated multiple videos, along with information on the series, show characters, and actor bios. The click-through rate in one day was an impressive 2.92 percent, and the interaction rate jumped up to 8.62 percent.3 The heavy interaction might, in part, be attributed to the ads entertainment value, a result of several touch-screen features combined with embedded video content. While the SyFy ad might be a novelty today, the growth of the tablet market as a whole suggests that the audience for these types of ads will increase rapidly.

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The SyFy Networks first rich-media ad for the iPad saw an 8.62 percent interaction rate.

#3: Ads and AppsMultiply Your Impact


Advertisers have long known that repeating a message makes it more likely that a consumer will pay attention. However, most media formats dont provide an easy way to drive multiple impressions at the same time. The Internet is a different animal. Publishers often use external ad servers to serve multiple ad units on one page with different creative content. Typically sold as a bundle to advertisers, these associated companion ads tend to deliver more impressions at a lower cost. The rate of returnmeasured in cost per thousand, or CPMsis higher.

Coors strengthened its recent Coors Lite campaign by purchasing a display ad right below an in-video placement.

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With mobile devices, screen space is often at a premium, making it harder to deliver multiple display ads on a single page. However, when the main page content is video, you can double up by buying a display ad along with an in-video advertisement. In fact, the latest mobile technology makes it possible for ad networks to recognize attributes of an in-video ad and sync it up with a companion banner ad. As with bundled display ads, Limelight Networks has found that this combination improves access to more targeted impressionsresulting in a stronger digital media campaign. Another way to multiply your impressions is by branding an entire mobile app, rather than just inserting a single ad. MTV Networks, for example, has begun to experiment with app sponsorships. Its popular app The Word, with commentary from Stephen Colbert, is for sale in Apples App Store for $1.99, but Android phone users can get the same app for free, thanks to sponsorship by Vitamin Water. In return for its sponsorship, Vitamin Water gains an exclusive marketing position on The Word for Android users. The model hearkens back to the early days of TV, when each show was supported primarily by a single sponsorship. Now in the early days of mobile apps and short-form programming, that same model can be offered at a much lower relative costdelivering advertising that is at once dominant throughout a given content channel, yet targeted to an audience with specific content preferences.

Bundling banners with in-video ads increases CPMs.

#4: Mobilize Your Site with a Universal URL


Just as todays environment demands that your digital ad campaigns reach mobile audiences, its equally critical that your website be accessible using mobile browsers. Google announced recently that its mobile search engine traffic grew a full 50 percent in the first half of 2010. Those searches mean that more and more consumers expect to have full access to online information, including rich media, even from the smaller screens they carry around in their pockets. Fortunately, the investment of publishing your site for a mobile audience doesnt have to be technically difficult or financially taxing. The ability to create content once and distribute it everywhere is increasingly important, as everywhere includes an innumerable variety of handsets, tablets, netbooks, and other mobile computing devices. This is where the concept of a Universal URL becomes useful. For consumers, a Universal URL provides a single site address that displays the right content, automatically formatted for whatever device theyre using at the time. For publishers, the service behind a Universal URLlike the one Limelight Networks provides through the REACH platformmasks the complexity of managing different screen sizes, resolutions, codecs, and media players of specific devices. The nearly infinite number of variables to consider in mobile publishing is overwhelming in the extreme. As consumers turn to their mobile devices for more and more web contentand their expectations continue to escalateyoull appreciate the benefits of handing off the complexity of mobile web delivery. The mobile Internet is about accessing content anywhere and anytime, on your own terms. In a word, its personal. Despite the fractured mobile universe, your mobile website has to meet consumer expectations for a well-packaged, personal online experience.

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#5: Use Rich Media Across Every Distribution Channel


Rich media strengthens digital marketing efforts, extending far beyond ad campaigns and mobile websites to social media, email, and SMS. Here again, the Universal URL comes in handy. Its a way to lead consumers to a rich, dynamic online experiencenot only across devices, but also across different outreach channels. Using one URL ensures continuity and allows you to extend your rich-media presence across new forms of communication. For example, you can target individuals directly with a Universal URL using multimedia messaging. Web marketing firm Imavex, a Limelight Networks customer, now includes video in its suite of mobile marketing services. A number of car dealerships use the service to send mobile video to both existing and prospective customers. A mobile video acts like a video voicemail that a consumer can access at any time. Sending a video birthday message to a loyal customer strengthens that relationship. Likewise, sending a follow-up video after a customer test-drives a new car adds a personal touch that can make the difference between a purchase and a lost opportunity.
1 http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1654/wireless-internet-users-cell-phone-mobile-data-applications 2 http://www.dynamiclogic.com/na/research/btc/june2010/DL_BTC_Video_June2010.pdf 3 http://www.mobilemarketer.com/cms/news/advertising/6752.html

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Mobile Marketing Worksheet


#1: Timing is EverythingMarket During a Live Event
Mobile video views increased more than 600% between the Beijing Olympics and the Olympic Games in Vancouver. Mobile ad inventory sold out before the opening ceremony had even begun.

Considerations for your mobile strategy:


What major live events are on the horizon? What major events track to your target audience? Can you extend an upcoming campaign (holiday event, SuperBowl, etc.) to include mobile outreach? If youve chosen an event for your mobile campaign, who is distributing it, and what mobile opportunities are they offering?

#2: Take Advantage of the Latest and Greatest


The SyFy channel ran a one-day ad campaign on the iPad using HTML5. The ad, which ran on The New York Times site, incorporated multiple videos and interactive elements. The click-through rate in one day was an impressive 2.92 percent, and the interaction rate jumped up to 8.62 percent.

Considerations for your mobile strategy:


Is your marketing content available across the hottest new mobile devices (iPad, Android tablets, new smartphones)? If not, why not? How does the quality of your creative across different devices compare with the quality of your competitors creative? Are your interaction and click-through rates high enough? If not, can you diagnose the problems? Can you use rich media to boost the effectiveness of your marketing campaigns?

#3: Ads and AppsMultiply Your Impact


The latest mobile technology makes it possible for ad networks to recognize attributes of an in-video ad and sync it up with a companion banner ad. Limelight Networks has found that combining a banner ad with an in-video ad (pre-roll, mid-roll, etc.) improves CPMs.

Considerations for your mobile strategy:


How can you bundle your online ad buys to get the best CPMs? Have you talked to content publishers about the bundling opportunities they can offer on the internet and through mobile apps and sites? How can you combine display ads with audio and video inserts? Are there app sponsorships you would like to emulate? Can you propose a time-limited sponsorship for an app that is currently paid?

#4: Mobilize Your Site with a Universal URL


Googles mobile search engine traffic grew a full 50 percent in the first half of 2010, with consumers searching the web on a vast array of mobile devices. A Universal URL provides one site address that automatically displays the right content formatted for whatever device the consumer is using.

Considerations for your mobile strategy:


How does your site perform across different mobile browsers and operating systems? Are consumers staying to browse on your site when they access it from a mobile device? How fast and efficient is your current system for publishing content for access from mobile devices?

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#5: Use Rich Media Across Every Distribution Channel


Rich media strengthens digital marketing efforts, extending beyond ad campaigns and mobile websites to social media, email, and SMS. Web marketing firm Imavex now includes video in its suite of mobile marketing services, providing a Universal URL for incorporating video in direct emails.

Considerations for your mobile strategy:


Do you follow through on your online ad campaigns with direct digital marketing? Are you using rich media across web, email, and SMS marketing? Can you tweak your campaigns based on audience response across multiple platforms?

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Maximizing Online Ad Performance


The media landscape is undergoing a massive transformation. Content is evolving with new formats and interactive capabilities, spreading across new devices and platforms, and being analyzed for more in-depth data related to audience viewership and engagement. More people are watching more content across more platforms than ever before. As quickly as media entertainment is evolving, so too is rich-media advertising. The opportunities for new types of outreach extend across new distribution channels and new ad formats, and digital advertisers are paying attention. The world of online interactive advertising is set to explode, with eMarketer projecting mobile online ad spending alone to exceed $1 billion in 2011, and $2.5 billion by 2014.1 Still, there is some trepidation among advertisers about how to make the most of the new opportunities available. How do you create an interactive ad that is useful, engaging, and performs well in multiple environments? How do you attract audiences with higher expectations of the media thats presented to them? The focus needs to be on three key elements: understanding the experience you want to create, reaching a wide audience, and measuring results with a sophisticated eye toward ongoing optimization.

#1: Create a Targeted, Results-Driven Experience


Determining objective is the first strategic consideration for an interactive advertising campaign. At a high level, are you aiming to increase brand awareness, or motivate a direct response? If its the former, then youre looking at developing campaign tactics that will engage and educate audiences. Video evokes emotion, games create interaction, and social media integration draws a personal connection between a consumer and your brand. All of these tactics allow users to become familiar with a company or product while also creating positive associations. It may be that the first image that comes to mind when you think of an interactive, rich-media ad is a retail product an ad for the Gap, or a new Xbox game release. However, the successful use of rich media, including video, isnt limited to flashy consumer brands. EyeWonder, a Limelight Networks company, worked with Beeby, Clark and Meyler to develop an in-banner video feed as part of the GE Healthymagination campaign launch. The feed showed a live The GE Healthymagination campaign featured a live video broadcast of GE CEO Jeff broadcast of the companys CEO. Half a million viewers Immelt delivering a speech on tuned in. the state of healthcare. It ran on numerous news and finance websites including CNN Money, Forbes, and Huffington Post, and generated four thousand comments during the hour-long live speech. Half a million viewers tuned in, and the ad reached a very healthy interaction rate of eight percent. It was a highly successful result for a brand awareness campaign.

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Moving beyond brand awareness, if your advertising goal is to prompt a direct user response, then the campaigns you develop should be closely targeted in order to reach the most receptive audiences. They also often require incentives to act. Attentiongrabbing promotional features like contests and coupon downloads can exert a powerful pull when directed to the right consumers. You can even vary the incentive based on the target audience. Dynamic creative optimization technology provides a means to deliver different ad versions to different consumers, based on user actions like click-through rate or interaction rate, with automatic optimization built in. In a similar vein, with behavioral targeting, you can target viewers by demographics, geography, activities on publishing sites, and even by the devices they use. This fine-grain level of targeting is still relatively new, but it has huge potential. In one of the first available studies, the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI) found that behaviorally-targeted online advertising in 2009 brought in on average more than two and a half times as much revenue per ad as non-targeted run of network advertising. 2

Based on click-thru rate, the family sedan clearly comes out ahead in this particular ad placement, showing the evolution of how the creative automatically optimizes to display the ad version most relevant to this particular audience.

Once you determine your advertising objective, consider a price/performance analysis to see what approach will get you the highest return for your efforts. The level of rich media and interaction you embed in your creative, as well as how finely you decide to target your message will impact the cost side of the equation, but also your return on investment. Its a balancing act, but one thats worth the effort, particularly as audiences continue to fragment across an array of media formats and new connected devices.

#2: Improve Engagement by Extending Your Reach


In todays world of fragmenting entertainment, interactive media and targeted ad delivery are critical, but so is overall reach. A high-percentage interaction rate is only useful if an ad reaches a wide enough audience. And audience targeting is only successful if the consumers you want to target are accessible. Fortunately, ad technology is evolving along with media distribution models and new consumer devices. Until recently, a video ad was only practically served through a desktop browser. Now video can be accessed in a number of different ways. Smartphones and tablets are seeing hockey-stick growth, with video consumption on these devices increasing at an exponential rate. eMarketer estimates that nearly eighty percent of Americans have a mobile phone as of 2010,3 and that the number of mobile video viewers in the US will grow almost thirty percent to 23.9 million by the end of the year.4

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Publishers, for their part, are exploring new ways to deliver video across multiple screens, and that creates new advertising opportunities as well. In-stream video ads, banner displays with click-to-play videos, and Universal URLs that deliver video automatically formatted for an end-users device are all tools of the new online video trade. In addition to new distribution technology, video ads also benefit now from technologies that let consumers stay engaged with the primary entertainment experience. Rather than take someone away from a dedicated browser page or application, newer interactive spots allow viewers to opt in to an ad and control the amount of time spent with it. If a viewer clicks on an in-stream video product placement or ticker element, the main video pauses long enough for the consumer to watch a short commercial or learn more about an advertisers products.

New interactive ads allow users to control when and how to engage with different ad elements.

Once the user is finished interacting with the ad, the main video resumes playing. In some cases, even pre-roll video ads have become more interactive by giving viewers the ability to direct their own ad experiences. Publishers are testing out the practice of offering multiple video ads to users, allowing them to choose which clip to watch. This engages viewers far more effectively than a typical passive pre-roll could. By allowing users to engage on their own terms, advertisers can build better experiences with the consumers they want to reach, ensuring that marketing execution is as successful as the strategy conceived behind it.

#3: Make Better Investments with Smarter Performance Analysis


Performance metrics for online advertising are unfortunately not as simple as tallying CPMs or Nielsen rating points. However, increasing complexity also brings with it more sophisticated data. Learning how to analyze new audience measurements provides significant advantages in campaign planning and refinement. For example, instead of only calculating click-though rates, examine engagement and interaction levelsi.e. how often viewers mouse over information or click on an ad elementto assess the brand impressions youre driving. In a remarkable 2009 study, Nielsen found that engagement metrics were a better predictor of ROI as measured by sales than click-through rates. 5 Knowing how successful you are at engaging consumers helps you more effectively analyze brand awareness gains and determine where money should be spent going forward.

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The complexity of measurement also comes through in the need to analyze data across multiple platforms. When youve taken the time to ensure delivery of rich-media advertising to the universe of smartphones and tablet devices, its critical to measure campaign success across those distribution channels. You may find that your ads perform better on certain platforms, which can offer demographic indicators or suggest differences in playback experiences across different devices. Fortunately, the trend toward analytics platform integration is accelerating. Increasingly there are tools available that provide a single window into all of your campaign data, both traditional online measurements and mobile performance metrics. These tools help you optimize a campaign during its run, and not just analyze a campaigns effectiveness after its complete. Data alone does not solve the challenges of delivering an effective ad campaign, but it does provide guideposts for continued optimization. The dynamic nature of ad delivery combined with the rapid return of performance metrics means marketers are better positioned than ever to act on response trends quickly to improve campaign effectiveness.
1 http://www.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1007992 2 http://www.networkadvertising.org/pdfs/NAI_Beales_Release.pdf 3 http://www2.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1007901 4 http://www2.emarketer.com/Article.aspx?R=1007845 5 http://blog.nielsen.com/nielsenwire/consumer/is-the-ad-biz-through-with-click-through/

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Online Advertising Worksheet


#1: Create a Targeted, Results-Driven Experience
For generating brand awareness, video evokes emotion, games create interaction, and social media integration draws a personal connection between a consumer and your brand. Direct response campaigns require closer targeting and incentives to act.

Considerations for your online campaign:


Is your objective brand awareness or direct response? Have you considered adding rich media elements to your campaign? Whether youre marketing a consumer product or business software, rich media provides a performance boost. Are you tailoring campaign messages and incentives based on how your ads perform? You can cant improve your performance if you dont measure it first. Have you done a price/performance analysis on your campaign? Be sure to include not only expenditures, but investment returns.

#2: Improve Engagement by Extending Your Reach


In todays world of fragmenting entertainment, interactive media and targeted ad delivery are critical, but so is overall reach. A high-percentage interaction rate is only useful if an ad reaches a wide enough audience.

Considerations for your online campaign:


Have you examined all of the distribution channels at your disposal? Have you analyzed the full variety of rich-media ad formats available across consumer devices and platforms? If not, are you sure youre choosing the right ad vehicles? Do consumers feel they can engage with your brand in the time and manner that is best for them? The more your audience is empowered, the better your marketing results.

#3: Make Better Investments with Smarter Performance Analysis


Learning how to analyze new audience measurements provides significant advantages in campaign planning and refinement.

Considerations for your online campaign:


How are you measuring campaign results? Monitoring engagement rates provides a better indicator of ROI than relying solely on click-through rates. Are you measuring performance across all distribution channels? Do you have the analytics tools to optimize outreach throughout your campaign, and not just reflect on performance afterwards?

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Increasing Site Engagement & Conversion


If you believe its impossible to add rich media and interactive web components without compromising site performance or at least paying a steep price think again.
In the early years of Internet adoption, it was enough for companies to paste up a virtual brochure on the web and call it a day. Today, weve moved so far beyond that static state and companies with any online ambition must consider a vast array of dynamic and rich features in their website strategies. While many organizations are finding new ways to engage consumers online, many others still struggle to achieve the right balance of creativity and efficiency. If you believe its impossible to add rich media and interactive web components without compromising site performance or at least paying a steep pricethink again. In truth, the roadmaps for delivering a successful, compelling website experience have already been drawn. Not only is it possible to get creative without sacrificing performance, its possible to deliver a quality experience without breaking the bank. You need to know first what elements contribute to the quality of your site, and second how to create a system that maximizes your resources for the highest levels of efficiency.

Driving Engagement with Rich Media


Companies dont add rich media to their websites just to follow a trend. They know that rich media invites visitors to interact online, provides unique information that cant be conveyed in text, furthers brand awareness, and even increases purchase intent on retail sites. The scenarios for rich media are endlessfrom product images, to training videos, to entertainment content, to customer testimonials, to live-video events. The list goes on. Not only does rich media deliver experiences companies want to impart, its increasingly a feature that consumers demand when they visit the online world. Companies need rich media to pique consumer interest, to keep audiences from straying elsewhere, and to make it easy for consumers to take action. But rich media is a double-edged sword: The more its used successfully, the more consumers expect from it. To complicate matters further, quality is measured across a number of variables, including technical components that contribute to the online experience. How well have you organized media assets on your site, and are they easy to navigate? Have you optimized your website code and compressed files effectively to ensure they dont create lag time? Are you working with a web acceleration partner? These considerations play into how your site performs and how consumers evaluate it. They require a website strategy that is carefully thought out and efficiently managed.

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Tips for Your Site Strategy


#1: Accelerate the Experience Consumers Wont Wait
Even if the stats didnt bear it outwhich, in fact, they do our own personal experiences tell us that we as consumers are highly impatient when it comes to accessing information online. Balanced against demand for richer experiences on the web, this creates a potential problem for companies looking to drive greater value from their online properties. For digital marketers, web acceleration has not traditionally appeared at the top of the priority list, but it has recently become a key factor in the performance of online assets. If a site doesnt load quickly, or if a video spends too long buffering, visitors move on. Web acceleration is new territory for many marketers. How can you approach the challenge of achieving a cost-effective, yet high-performance result? We recommend you start by considering three technology factors: reach, scale, and the ability to customize an acceleration solution to your specific needs. 1. Reach. Reach determines how far and how well you can spread your message online. If your audience is global, or if you are targeting consumers in specific geographic regions, you need to know that your infrastructure supports the best possible website experience for your entire audience, no matter where in the world they are located. 2. Scale. You want as many people as possible to engage with your site, but traffic is rarely predictable. You need the ability to turn up capacity quickly and cost-effectively in the event of unexpected traffic spikes. If popularity downgrades your visitors experience, you risk undermining your own success. 3. Flexibility. Web acceleration services have traditionally been the domain of IT departments. However, as technology becomes increasingly crucial to your marketing strategy, web acceleration services start to fall within the marketing realm. A new, more flexible payment model is needed to support the aggressive objectives and often-uneven timelines of marketing campaigns.

Customer Example: Halo Reach Campaign


The creative agency AKQA recently developed a revolutionary microsite to support the launch of Halo Reach for the Xbox. It was a massive endeavor, allowing users to generate points of light in remembrance of fallen heroes in the Halo saga, and AKQA knew that it needed reach, scale, and flexibility in its supporting infrastructure in order to pull off the experience. The site was to run a live HD feed for twenty days showing a large automatic robotic arm adding points of light to a 3D sculpture. AKQA worked closely with Limelight Networks to ensure there would be no delivery glitches, and no interruption in the experience. Ultimately, the Halo Reach site was accessed by more than one million visitors in 186 different countries. Fans created more than 115 thousand points of light, far exceeding expectations, and helping to extend engagement with the Halo brand in conjunction with the new Halo game release.

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#2: Manage Your Rich Media Assets More Efficiently


For video specifically, an online video platform provides a way to simplify the publishing process and create the richest possible content for online consumers.
Digital marketers need to systemize the process of adding new rich-media assets, fine-tuning media format and presentation, and supporting delivery to multiple devices. For video specifically, an online video platform provides a way to simplify the publishing process and create the richest possible content for online consumers. There are three different video platform choices to consider: 1. Build or buy. The choice to build your own video platform or outsource video publishing depends in part on your ability to make educated decisions about video player technology, transcoding needs, and device support. It also depends on the internal resources you can allocate to maintenance and troubleshooting. 2. Free or premium. There is always the option to choose a free video platform such as YouTube, but with it comes a slew of limitations. You should consider how much control you need over branding, ad placement, and visual style. 3. Simple or complex. As your content library grows, the ability to publish video efficiently becomes more and more important. If youre updating content frequently, consider a video platform with a drag-and-drop interface that lets you not only add content, but customize it quickly and easily.

Customer Example: SKLZ TV


SKLZ, the flagship brand of Pro Performance Sports, and the largest athletic training aid manufacturer and distributor in the world, uses the Limelight Video Platform Solution (VPS) to power SKLZ TV on its website. SKLZ decided against a free, off-the-shelf solution for SKLZ TV specifically because it needed customization capabilities for its video player. The company used Limelights open APIs to build its own content filtering system with customized keyword search options. This targeted search functionality helps consumers find specific information in a vast library of instructional sports videos. SKLZ also took advantage of a VPS feature to tailor the play button with a SKLZ logo on each of its videos. Whenever a visitor decides to embed a SKLZ video on another site, the logo goes with it, helping to extend brand presence across the web. To date, SKLZ TV continues to drive greater sales and traffic to the SKLZ site every month.

#3: Optimize Your Site for the Highest Performance


As a marketer, you want visitors to focus on your content, rather than wondering why a picture takes so long to load.
As a marketer, you want visitors to focus on your content, rather than wondering why a picture takes so long to load or why your site is popping up an error message on their Android phone. Consider instituting regular health checks to ensure that your site is tuned for performance, across all devices. Specific checkpoints should include: 1. Code. You can speed up page delivery, for example, by combining scripts and stylesheets, splitting objects across different domains, and optimizing your sites search function. Page performance impacts not only the consumer experience, but also your SEO (search engine optimization) rankings. 2. Compression. Dont save compression for only the biggest files on your site. Even compressing a 100K JavaScript can help you squeeze out better site performance. 3. Mobility. A new mobile device arrives on the market virtually every day which means you need to support an array of hardware, software, and Internet connection requirements. Make sure your site is optimized for mobile by testing it across the wide range of devices and operating systems available.

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Site Engagement Worksheet


#1: Accelerate the Experience Consumers Wont Wait
Web acceleration is new territory for many marketers. How can you approach the challenge of achieving a cost-effective, yet high-performance result?

Considerations for your website strategy:


Do you have the infrastructure needed to reach audiences around the globe? Does the performance of your website hold up across geographies? If you have a spike in traffic, do you have the capacity to manage the influx of visitors? If you use web acceleration services, is your payment model flexible enough to meet the timelines of your marketing campaigns? Have you discussed site needs with potential web acceleration partners to determine if its possible to increase online performance and weed out inefficiencies that may be driving up costs?

#2: Manage Your Rich Media Assets More Efficiently


Digital marketers need to systemize the process of adding new rich-media assets, fine-tuning media format and presentation, and supporting delivery to multiple devices.

Considerations for your website strategy:


Do you have the ability to make educated decisions about video player technology, transcoding needs, and device support, as well as the internal resources to handle maintenance and troubleshooting? If you are using a video platform, how much control do you need over branding, ad placement, and visual style? Do you update your content frequently, and if so, does your video platform support updates efficiently?

#3: Optimize Your Site for the Highest Performance


As a marketer, you want visitors to focus on your content, rather than wondering why a picture takes so long to load or why your site is popping up an error message on their Android phone.

Considerations for your website strategy:


Do you know how to streamline your site code to deliver the highest site performance? Performance impacts consumer perception and search engine results. Are you compressing everything on your site, or only the largest files? Is your site optimized for every mobile device? Do you have the means to test it?

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Campaign Action Plan


As a marketer, its critical for you to know about all the potential tactics at your disposal especially as new technologies, channels, and audience behaviors open up new opportunities. But its just as important to know how to use these tactics to create successful marketing campaigns. That means picking the right tactics to invest in, putting them together into an integrated campaign, and measuring results so you can optimize your marketing over time. Here are some tips for moving from exciting new possibilities to successful campaign realities.

Choose the right mix


Lots of tactics look attractive, and newer ones tend to generate a lot of requests (like Lets do a viral video!). The trick: dont start with tactics, start with strategy. Doing so will not only help you create more successful campaigns, but also help you justify and defend your investment. Some specific tips: Set your strategic underpinnings. Agree to and document your overall goal, measurable business objectives, target audiences (be specific), and key message. Think from your targets perspective. What information do they need to go through each step of the purchase process? Where do they go to get it? What are their online behaviors and media preferences? Match your tactics to your objectives. For example, some tactics are fabulous for building awareness; others are really good at getting targets to learn about your product. Make sure youve got your real objectives covered.

Integrate across tactics


Most successful campaigns dont rest on one successful execution (even if thats the single thing we remember about the campaign). There are almost always multiple channels, media, and tactics at work and working together. Effectively integrating your campaign elements will increase the performance of each element, and multiply the results of your campaign overall. Some specific tips: Connect the dots. Avoid dooming a tactic with build it and they will come illusions. Whether you use funnel math or just common sense, be realistic about your investment in promotional tactics that will reach enough targets to drive a sufficient fraction of them to engage. Never leave a prospect at a dead end. For example, if you grab your targets attention with a banner, give them a way to engage in-banner with a video, then drive them to deeper content on your site, and let them become a qualified lead by signing up for more. Repeat, repeat, repeat. Your targets need to see the same message many times for it to sink in. Make sure theyre seeing it consistently across the banners, the videos, the landing pages, the web site, the print ads, etc.

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Measure and optimize


One of a marketers biggest pitfalls is not being able to show the return on a marketing investment. Planning for measurement is critical not just for proving performance, but also for launching results-oriented campaigns and getting the most out of them over time. Some specific tips: Its never too early to think about measurement. As soon as you know your objectives, you can start figuring out what you need to measure. Make objectives and their measurement a test for each tactic in your campaign and use them to help make decisions about creative execution, too. Put a measurement plan in place. Plan ahead for resources, time, and tools youll need for tagging, pulling data, analyzing, and reporting. And identify what measurement insights will really be important to you, so youre not just swimming in spreadsheets of data but rather looking for tell-tale indicators that matter. Be ready to optimize. Alas, you can never be sure exactly how your audience is going to react to your efforts. But new technologies like rich media give you richer performance data faster, and new tools allow you to test multiple versions and optimize on the fly. Make sure you take advantage of these in time to make a difference.

Make Rich Media Deliver for Your 2011 Campaigns


For more information on how to make rich media deliver, visit our mobility platform, dynamic creative optimization, video platform, and web acceleration resources online, or contact our sales team.

About Limelight Networks:


Every day, Limelight helps marketers deliver engaging websites, rich-media content, and innovative advertising to Internet-connected consumers around the world. Our global platform and our deep expertise in high-performance online delivery can accommodate any combination of content, audience, user device, and project objective. So marketers and advertisers can create the ultimate user experience on every screen, every timewithout needing to worry about the technology that makes it possible.

2011 Limelight Networks, Inc. All rights reserved. Limelight Networks is a registered trademark of Limelight Networks, Inc. Other products and company names may be trademarks of their respective companies. All services are subject to change or discontinuance without notice. February 2011 Beyond Buffering: 3 Proven Rich-Media Strategies for Your 2011 Campaigns Page 20