Marshall McLuhan got it right, and the medium is still the message, according to new research presented by UK industry group Newsworks.
Findings presented at their Effectiveness Summit yesterday show that advertisements on digital newsbrand sites are 80 per cent more likely to be viewed than advertising on non-newsbrand sites.
Presenting research by Lumen, managing director Mike Follett (pictured) said it showed the attention newsbrands were known to command in print translates to their digital offerings: "With so much content competing for our eyeballs in the digital landscape, as well as advertisers' concerns over measurability and transparency, newsbrands are providing an engaging online context for advertisers to reach consumers."
Delegates to the summit also heard that people are 1.4 times more likely to trust newsbrand content on social media than social media content in general. The work builds on Newsworks' ongoing insight programme into newsbrands' effectiveness, which last year proved the ROI benefits of advertising via print newspapers.
Newsworks chief executive Vanessa Clifford says the themes will continue to inform the group's insight agenda. She joined Group M managing director for digital trading Robin O'Neill to announce a long-running partnership to explore the value of quality context.
Prior to rolling out the large-scale project, Group M conducted a 'proof of concept' test analysing the engagement and brand scores of five campaigns and allying the results with quality of inventory. The number of campaigns covered will now increase tenfold to more than 50 within eight months, with the aim of proving that quality brand environments deliver better value for advertisers. The first round of results will be released in the autumn and the eventual goal of the project is to make the results an actionable factor in trading.
O'Neill says the aim is to recognise that viewability and engagement with digital advertising - not just potential exposure - is vital for brand success. "Our aim is to make this a factor in trading, just as much as numbers of people and impressions."
More about the event and Newsworks' effectiveness research programme here.