Wednesday, 27 February 2008

Microsoft launches 'Engagement Mapping'

Microsoft have announced the launch of a new tracking system for advertisers called Engagement Mapping. They claim this offers a new approach to managing and measuring the effectiveness of online advertising campaigns that goes beyond the current 'last ad clicked' standard that associates sales, leads or Web traffic simply to the last click or ad exposure. The Engagement Mapping system now takes into account all the various online 'touchpoints' and interactions a consumer experiences before an eventual sale.

They will be beta testing the new Engagement ROI tool, which is an online campaign reporting and optimisation solution, with a number of their large advertising clients and agencies in the US so that they can evaluate and assign measurable values to a consumer’s interaction with ads, thus giving advertisers and publishers a more complete picture of online behaviour.

This tool appears to answer a need within the online advertising field to understand the process that consumers take towards an eventual action and the role that different forms of advertising may have. Value is assigned and measured on a real-time basis and takes into account the impact that recency, frequency, size and ad format (such as rich media and video) have on a consumer’s online path to action.

Engagement ROI is designed to allow advertisers and publishers to manage their campaigns with greater insight and control than previously available through third-party ad serving. The tool has been developed on the back of Microsoft's acquisition of AQuantive last year and also gives them a platform to challenge - and criticise - the role that Google's dominant search advertising system offers to advertisers.

The beta officially begins on March 1, with results expected to be available towards the end of the year.

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