Thursday, September 20, 2007

Advertising 2.0: It’s Raining Widgets!

Google launched widget ads – this mashup of a widget with a traditional banner ad creates exciting possibilities. There are a few examples here – I particularly like the movie ad – ‘A Mighty Heart’ and the Honda ad.

I like these two for a few reasons:

  • It’s basically a shrunken micro site – it serves as a great source of information. But also (probably because of the size limitations) is meant to present only the most important/relevant information, which is really all most of us want anyways.
  • If created properly the content provided may serve as a source of information that may be of interest to special interest groups, partners and hopefully customers. If the right information is put into the ad people will want to post it to their sites and why not let them? Google even thought of that and included an ‘embed this ad’ script (as shown here).
  • It’s interactive –they even have video components! Unlike a “pass through” ad, these ads combine the best elements of full web-apps with the portability and size of the traditional Google ad. Videos, forms, games, all possibilities creating an interactive experience for the user.

What would you put in your ad? I think it would be cool to show a 3D model or interactive diagram in there. Or if I were promoting an event it would be nice to embed the registration page in the widget itself.

Needless to say, this opens the door for a new use of the traditional Google Ad budget. The early question is whether this will be part of our existing Google Ad campaign or require a new strategy with a totally new campaign. Either way, I’m sure it means more marketing.

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