IQ News: Seal To

Promote Rich Media
With the goal of increasing the acceptance of multimedia ad units in the online advertising industry, New York-based this week will launch a program called the Enriched Media Seal of Acceptance. The program calls for online publishers to display the seal on their sites to inform advertisers that they are willing to accept multimedia ad forms.
David Dowling, president of the Grey Advertising unit, said enriched media combines beyond-the-banner enhanced ad units with “rich media” technologies, which have proven to be effective in reaching consumers.
“It increases the visibility and increases the return on investment,” Dowling said of the ads. has increasingly used such ads for clients including Procter & Gamble, and Cendant.
Publishers wishing to post the seal on the homepage of their advertising or media kit section of their sites must accept at least two types of enhanced ad units and rich media technologies. The units include streaming banners, banners with daughter windows (separate ad windows), pop-up ads, interstitials and transitional pop-ups. These units comply with the voluntary ad unit guidelines being developed by the FAST committee, an industry group that emerged from the Procter & Gamble-sponsored Future of Advertising Stakeholders Summit held last summer.
Sites can register for the program at, which will also be linked to the seal.
Though the program is sponsored just by, Dowling doesn’t foresee any barriers to adoption across the industry. “We truly view this as an industry-wide initiative,” he said.
The tools to create rich media currently include programming codes DHTML, Java, and Javascript, multimedia tools Enliven and Unicast, interactive content tools Shockwave and Flash, and streaming media tools InterVU, RealAudio and RealVideo.
Mike Donahue, executive vice president of the American Association of Advertising Agencies and head of the FAST Committee’s ad model subcommittee, said the barrier to using enriched ads is not just sites declining to accept them, but also lack of bandwidth. But, he added, anything that can be done to encourage the use of such models is a good step. Further, he said the program addresses consumers’ need for more utility within ads.