'Rich Media' Spending Up, But so are Advertisers' Concerns

Pam Parker writes in the Internet Advertising Report that American advertisers intend to increase the amount of money their spending on ‘rich media’ (i.e., ads containing audio, video, JavaScript or Flash animations, etc.) online ads, but that they are still concerned about whether this spending is worth it.

Among the 579 U.S. advertising executives that Jupiter Research last month interviewed, 42 percent said they planned to spend between 1 to 19 percent of their online advertising dollars on ‘rich media’ (only 36 percent said last year’s spending was in that range). Another 17 percent of advertisers said they would spend between 20 and 39 percent (up from 12 percent last year). Most important, the number of advertisers who planned to use ‘rich media’ for the first time jumped to 46 percent this year from 28 percent last year.

Overall, advertisers’ spending on ‘rich media’ will account for 11 percent of American online ad spending for 2004, Jupiter found. (Streaming will account for 4 percent of overall spending for 2004.)

Although spending on ‘rich media’ grows, the advertisers who Jupiter interviewed cited unclear Return-On-Investment and high production, labor and deployment costs as their two most significant concerns about it. Their other concerns were fear of interrupting user experience, bandwidth constraints and lack of targeting precision.