Rich media advertising creator Unicast Communications has signed on with ad network Engage Technologies to serve Unicast's rich media "superstitial" advertising across Web sites subscribing to the Engage network.
Unicast's superstitials are rich media ads that can be authored in a variety of creative formats, including Macro-media Flash animation. Unlike existing, streaming-media interstitial and pop-up advertising schemes that interrupt Web surfers as they visit sites, a superstitial ad pre-loads in its entirety in the background during surfing idle periods.
The first superstitials using Engage's ad-targeting solutions are expected to roll out in first quarter 2000 and will use Engage's profile-driven ad technologies and database of 35 million-plus anonymous user profiles. Additionally, superstitials will leverage Engage's AudienceNet, a Web-wide, profile-driven advertising and marketing network.
"We've been working with rich media ads from the site side for a while, but this is the first collaboration that will actually profile-enable superstitials," said Kathleen Kreis, director of strategic communications at Andover, Mass.-based Engage.
The partnership, being announced today, follows Unicast's recently inked deals with ad networks Flycast, Adsmart and NetGravity and will not only increase superstitial reach, but result in more tracking data being fed back to Unicast.
"Not only can advertisers buy a superstitial from a network and get one report against it, but now they can also target those superstitials and fully maximize the creative potential of the superstitial," claimed Allie Shaw, vice president of marketing at New York-based Unicast.
According to Kreis, third-party research has shown that Engage profile-based advertisements achieved 28 percent greater click rate than ads targeted by content. In addition, a Millward Brown Interactive study reported that 66 percent of superstitial viewers remembered having seen the brand advertised compared to 32 percent for banners.