The latest IABNZ figures showed that display advertising spend had dipped from $131 million in 2013 to $128 million in 2014, bucking the upward trend that was reflected across all other online categories. This shift is most likely driven by the growing sentiment among advertisers that display advertising, particularly in the form of banner ads, is ineffective.
Advertisers are increasingly questioning the brand value offered by banner ads that seemingly do little more than annoy web users. And for this reason, media owners and agencies are being forced into producing innovative online banner campaigns that include interactive elements.
So recently, when FCB and the Pandora international ad development team set out to create a campaign for the release of the new Holden Cruze, the pair decided to give users a look inside the vehicle.
"We’re always looking for ways to surprise potential customers with an idea shared clearly and unforgettably,” says Greg Wood, the digital creative director at FCB Auckland.
And the company did this by developing an ad that allows desktop listeners to experience what it would be like to experience Pandora while sitting in the vehicle. The interactive ad plays out on the dashboard of the new Holden and updates to reflect the song that is streaming for the listener.
"We worked with Pandora to build a skin that shows web listeners exactly what they’re hearing on Pandora right now, displayed in the 7” MyLink touchscreen of the Holden Cruze," says Wood. "And we go on to show that built-in apps like Pandora are just the start of the MyLink experience – via an invite to try out voice activation, on the Holden site."
Wood explains that the idea by the campaign is to make the Pandora platform part of the campaign.
“Ideally the idea should be intrinsically relevant to the channel it’s displayed in. In this case, Pandora is not only a media placement opportunity, it's a chance to show how seamlessly the Pandora App integrates with the Holden CruzeMyLink system."
Last year, Pandora also customised its platform for an Electoral Commission campaign, which had bespoke skins and a range of clickable links.
Marnie Samphier, the general manager of marketing at Holden, also sees the campaign as a more effective means of relaying the brand message.
"We're always pushing for innovation, particularly in the digital space, and this is a great example of stretching people’s thinking," says Samphier. "We talk a lot about the amazing technology that comes standard in a new Holden, and this campaign brings that message to life in an unexpected way, and hopefully in a way that a consumer instantly understands."
The ability to use Pandora in the car has emerged as a strong trend in recent research commissioned by Pandora Internet Radio through research house Fresh Focus.
"A recent Pandora NZ research survey showed that 80 percent of Pandora listeners in this country now want Pandora in their next car," Says Melanie Reece, Pandora NZ’s commercial director. “That's over 325,000 affluent, influential potential car buyers for Holden to target."
The Holden campaign will run on Pandora from 20th April for six weeks.