Undertone Releases Responsive Design Cross Platform Ad Format

ScreenShift product aims to make mobile ads easier to execute, more brand friendly

As users spend more time on multiple devices (jumping from desktop computers to tablets to smartphones), marketers are interested in targeting consumers wherever their eyeballs happen to land, preferably without too much pain.

Undertone believes it has come up with an answer to both the labor intensive challenge mobile carries as well as its lackluster creative options. The company on Monday will release a responsive ad format called ScreenShift, which the digital ad company believes will help the industry overcome roadblocks standing in the way of serving ads across multiple device—especially mobile. The idea is that ads can be served seamlessly across any device, hopefully making the mobile ad experience a bit more exciting.

"Marketers want to be able to execute across screens. What we've done is create the format and the ability to deploy it accordingly," said Undertone co-founder Eric Franchi.

Measurement is another big part of Undertone's pitch. "We're going to be able to provide reporting on a per-screen basis," Franchi said. "That's what marketers want. They want to see smartphone vs. tablet vs. PC. We're providing deep interaction reporting, which is going to be a pretty interesting thing to marketers."

ScreenShift was built using HTML 5, a technology Undertone feels strongly about, based on the amount of mobile traffic Apple devices are responsible for.

Undertone previewed ScreenShift with a L'Oréal spot. On desktops and tablets, the ad appears in a push-down format. On mobile devices, the ad overtakes the entire screen for 15 seconds (unless you close out earlier), and then it shrinks to a small ad unit at the top of the screen. The L'Oréal ad included an interactive swipe function on desktop and mobile devices.

Ultimately, Franchi said he wants to make the whole process of marketing on multiple devices simpler. "It just works across all screens," he said of the new format. Franchi said he expects campaigns using ScreenShift to be live in June.