Banner ads are now no longer just uni-directional, it would seem. A campaign being run by Pepsi called "Dear Mr. President" is allowing people to record a video message straight from an embedded banner on a standard website. Empoweringconsumers to not only interact with the banner but actually create content and push it back to the advertiser, it's perhaps one of the more innovative uses of online video advertising today.
Who's behind it…
The banner is part of a larger "Refresh Everything" campaign by Pepsi, and thecompanies behind the campaign are R/GA and Eyeblaster. According to Eyeblaster's PR Agency Mortar, ad promos are running on sites including Yahoo!, YouTube, and the Google Content network.
How it works…
The video submissions are currently being compiled, and ending up on Pepsi's YouTube channel. According to Pepsi, "The best and most popular videos" are to be featured on their own Refresh Everything website (which currently features a bunch of celebrity promos).
Consumers pushing content back to the advertiser
What does this mean for online video? Well, it means that banner advertising has done what cable did when it went digital, it became a two-way communication avenue. Not only can content be pushed to viewers as it has been doing for years, but now it also allows the consumer, the viewers, to push content back. It allows for dynamic interaction and compilation of user-created content. It gives the people, the consumers, the viewers a voice. More than a voice, it gives them a potentially fully interactive medium with which to reach out to the advertisers. Imagine that, consumers reaching through the internet toward you, telling you what they want to see, hear, buy. Telling you what they like and don't like and telling you who they are, where they are and what they're thinking.
Isn't that what technology is about? Enabling us to do what we couldn't before, to go beyond what we ever hoped and to connect us all like never before? Sure it might not seem like much but it's a step forward. It's a potential way for advertisers to better understand their consumers, to better target their advertising and to better spend that all-important marketing budget.
ReelSEO's Grant Crowell contributed to this report.