What is Interactive Advertising?

G. Wiesen

Interactive advertising is a form of advertising that seeks to draw customers into the advertisement and make a stronger impact on the viewer. This is often done to make a particular product stand out, especially when there is a great deal of competition with that product, or to enhance the message of the advertisement. These advertisements can utilize various forms of technology, often appearing on the Internet, though they may use a number of other methods and features to achieve their interactive nature as well. Interactive advertising can be quite beneficial, though it is also often more expensive than standard advertising.

Woman with hand on her hip
Woman with hand on her hip

There are a number of different ways in which a company can achieve interactive advertising, and various reasons why a company would want to do so. One of the major reasons for this type of advertising is to make a stronger impact on potential customers, to set the advertisement apart from competitors and leave a lasting imprint on consumers. A sign for a pair of jeans, for example, could simply use images of people wearing those jeans to try to sell them to customers.

One particular company, however, used a large black sign with a white arrow pointing down to small print at the bottom of the poster. When someone bent over to look at the small print, the text indicated that by bending over they were showing off their posterior, which would look great in a pair of jeans made by that company. This drew in the person reading the poster, and made a connection with the viewer that could be more lasting than another image of jeans.

Interactive advertising can also be used to demonstrate a particular message or make a certain point about a product. For example, one advertisement for a major brand of cola used a sign to advertise new features on the soda bottle that increased grip on the bottle. Posters for this new bottle design included Velcro, which then grabbed the clothing of those who walked by the poster. This made people stop and pay attention to an advertisement they may have otherwise passed by, drawing the potential customer in and reinforcing the message of the interactive advertising.

A great deal of interactive advertising can also use various forms of technology to make people pay attention to the advertisements and have a personal stake in the product. Some signs and posters use touch screens or animation and sound to capture the attention of passersby and to make people want to stop and notice the advertisement. Interactive advertising on the Internet can even feature advertisements that are actually games a person can play while looking at the product being advertised.

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