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Interactive online advertising is a form of online advertising that solicits engagement from the user to make a more lasting impression. It can range from overt advertising such as banners asking people to click if they want more information, to more subtle campaigns that increase brand awareness and interest, like Internet scavenger hunts. Advertising firms that specialize in this service can offer an array of products to customers, and it is also possible to work through a more conventional advertising agency.
The development of interactive online advertising considers the end goals of the campaign and the needs of the customer. Some companies want to make contacts to generate sales or leads, like detailed contact information that they can use in advertising campaigns. Others want to collect demographic information while increasing awareness, and may not necessarily rely on generating immediate sales. Some want to create buzz and interest to generate hype around a project, increasing consumer attentiveness to their activities.
Some forms of interactive online advertising are designed for embedding within a web page, like banner ads. Others are interstitials and popups that demand attention from the user. Companies can also create entire websites to set up an advertising campaign that may involve an interactive adventure, user-submitted content, and other forms of customer interaction with the content. In all cases, companies collect demographic information about users who come into contact with the advertising, and they use this information to track performance.
Cookies and other tools can collect basic customer data. Other interactive online advertising also attempts to solicit more data from customers by having them fill out forms. Companies can also observe consumer behavior to collect information about where their customers are coming from and what they are doing with the advertising. This information can help companies develop more effectively targeted and designed campaigns.
Developers of interactive online advertising may need to consider various legal concerns, depending on where the ads run. Restrictions on the content and style of advertising may apply online in some nations, and companies may also have limits in terms of the kind of data they collect and how they use it. If necessary, a disclaimer may be added to alert consumers to the nature of the advertising and the type of data the company may collect and use. Consumers may also need to create an account in order to access some features, to allow the company to screen signups for underage customers or other customers who might cause concerns.