Responsive display ads are advertisements designed to provide the same user experience across all devices, adapting seamlessly to fit any screen. This means they’re built using fluid grids for images and text; their content adjusts dynamically within set layouts that ensure consistency even as screen sizes change.
In 2021, mobile advertising spending reached a record 288 billion U.S. dollars worldwide. Spending will amount to nearly 413 billion by 2024. (Statista)
The value of responsive display is that brands can expect consistent results with each placement—in other words, they know the ad will deliver the same relevance and performance whether viewed on a laptop or tablet (or mobile device). A brand’s message doesn’t need to be altered simply because users are experiencing it on different screens.
Brands are increasingly creating separate ads for different devices, in an effort to target users on smartphones or tablets. However, the problem is that these ads aren’t always optimized for their specific device—and thus don’t perform up to par.
A key benefit of responsive display advertising is being able to optimize campaigns with each placement so brands can expect consistent results across screens without the need to create separate ad campaigns for every device type.
Shifting Ad Dollars
With responsive display advertising, brands can improve the performance of their mobile and tablet campaigns. And as demand for these devices soars—according to eMarketer’s latest smartphone and tablet usage forecast —the focus on responsiveness will only drive performance further. For example, an ad that delivers a poor user experience on a smartphone may be less likely to gain traction than one that offers high-quality visuals and rich messaging no matter how it is viewed or where it appears.
With the ability to easily increase reach across devices without sacrificing campaign performance, responsive display ads offer more value for marketers and promise better results throughout the entire customer journey.
Reach a Broader Audience
Responsive display ads can be designed in accordance with a brand’s existing creativity and messaging. And because they offer the same user experience across devices, responsive display ads allow brands to reach a broader audience without sacrificing quality.
While desktop and laptop users only represented 8% of digital media time spent in
In today’s fast-paced world, consumers use different devices throughout every stage of the customer journey—and brands need to be prepared to address them all accordingly if they want to engage, connect and convert.
For example, a person could begin their journey by researching a new service or product on a tablet while relaxing in bed. They then use their smartphone to comparison shop or plan ahead for an upcoming trip. By the time this person is ready to make a purchase, they could be shopping from their laptop at work during lunch break—or even on their TV (using voice command) while watching sports at home with the family.
Responsive display ads offer brands the flexibility to reach users no matter where they are across each stage of the consumer research process. And with users increasingly shifting between devices throughout every step of the journey, ad performance will benefit as marketers can utilize one consistent message and creative that works across all devices.
By achieving the same results across all screens, brands can expect more from their display ads—and are sure to receive greater value for each campaign.
Video ads can be created in the same high-quality format and messaging as a brand’s other creative assets. And because they’re optimized with each placement, brands can expect consistent results (and customer engagement) across every screen.
As consumers continue to shift between different screens when looking for information or researching products and services, video content will play an increasingly important role throughout the consumer journey—which is why optimizing campaigns with responsive display ads makes sense.
For example, say an individual begins their journey by watching a video on the evening news about amazing vacation destinations around the world. They then use their smartphone to discover which of their friends have been where they are considering going. Finally, this person turns on their television set to watch TV at night while browsing Instagram—where they could see an ad for their dream destination featured in a user’s post.
By achieving consistent results across all screens, brands can expect more from their display campaigns. And as a result, marketers are able to shift dollars away from being “device-focused” toward creating more personalized experiences that have a bigger impact on customers’ final decisions.
The Ability to use Feeds
Aside from offering the same ad experience across devices, new responsive display capabilities also allow marketers to incorporate different formats and creative types into one campaign. This includes using feeds for more creative flexibility—and pulling assets such as text, logos, and images directly from a brand’s existing library.
As digital media consumption continues to shift away from traditional desktop/laptop computers toward mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, campaigns that were once only viable on larger screens (or those that required extensive resizing) can now be taken off the shelf and run across all devices with ease. Whether it’s an e-commerce site taking orders or a CPG brand looking to market new products on social video channels like Facebook or Instagram—to name just a few—the flexibility of responsive display ads allows marketers to take advantage of new opportunities, including enhanced customer experiences.
Conversion tracking allows marketers to attribute purchases across devices, which can often be difficult because of the many different paths customers take to make a purchase. However, by using multi-touch attribution models that record all consumer interactions—regardless of device or touchpoint—marketers are able to deliver more accurate reporting and insights for smarter decision-making.
As consumers continue to shift between screens throughout their purchase journey, conversion tracking plays an increasingly important role in the overall success of any campaign. And with responsive display ads, brands can expect more from every campaign as marketers are able to better connect digital media exposures to offline sales through enhanced tracking capabilities.
Finally, using a single responsive display ad is easy: Just choose the look and feel of your creative and place it on any site. But by taking this one step further with rich media or video executions, marketers can deliver an even more engaging experience for consumers. Brands looking to establish deeper connections with customers across devices can prepare to see greater engagement rates as more personalized experiences become the industry standard.
Marketers looking to maximize their digital marketing budgets need only look at the success of brands such as Apple and Chrysler—who used responsive display ads not only to reach new audiences but also engage existing customers in ways that were previously impossible. And as mobile audience strategies continue to drive forward, we expect this trend will grow exponentially over
Global Digital Trends: https://pubmatic.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/12/2020-Global-Digital-Ad-Trends.pdf
Mobile advertising spending worldwide 2007-2024: Statista Research Department,
Lori Ballen is a real estate agent in Las Vegas. She’s a digital marketing specialist, speaker, and marketing coach and loves to share her “Ballen Method” to generate website traffic and leads online. Lori’s specialties are SEO content writing (ranking on the search engines), social media strategies, and affiliate marketing. Need a website? Contact Lori’s brothers Jeff and Paul Helvin at Ballen Brands.