Report: Financial Services Firms Top Web Advertisers
Hoping to drum up new business amid a slowing economy, financial services
firms poured money
into online advertising during June, according to a report released Tuesday by
Nielsen//NetRatings (Nadsaq: NTRT).
Three of the top five online advertisers during the month of June
were financial services firms,
"The financial services push is reflective of economic times,"
NetRatings vice president and
principal analyst Allen Weiner said. "With the economy slowing down, financial services
companies are doing everything they can to stimulate consumer spending."
In all, the top 10 online advertisers
spent US$143 million on Web advertising, according to the
New York market research and measurement firm.
Providian Bank topped the list, spending
more than $20.1 million on Internet advertising during
the month, followed by JP Morgan Chase, with $16.9 million spent. Capital One ranked fourth,
spending $14.7 million.
Dual Purpose Ads
Companies are using the Internet advertising medium both to drive
traffic directly to their Web
offerings -- with discounts and offers designed to generate click-through traffic -- and at the
same time, to build brand awareness, the study said.
In the past, experts have questioned the Web's ability to be used
as a branding medium.
Looking to make the Web a more versatile medium for marketing, the Internet Advertising
Bureau recently unveiled new, larger ad sizes and released guidelines for using rich media ads.
"The financial ads are an example of the current trend in the
world of online advertising -- the
merger of branding and direct marketing," Weiner said. "Financial services ads marketing brand
names such as Visa, MasterCard and Shell are used for branding, while direct offers are
created through the simple click of a banner."
Media on Media
Also in the NetRatings top five were Sony (NYSE: SNE), which ranked
third, and AOL Time
Warner (NYSE: AOL), which ranked fifth. Sony -- which recently inked a massive marketing,
consulting and co-branding deal with Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO) -- spent $15.6 million online in
June, while AOL spent $14.1 million.
Other notable advertisers in the top 10 included Orbitz, the airline-backed
travel site that is
making a major push to capture market share from more established rivals. Orbitz spent just
over $12 million in online ads during the month of its highly touted launch.
Also in the top 10 were Classmates Online and Bertelsmann AG,
which both spent about $13
million, and Neway, with $11 million spent.
Amazon.com (Nasdaq: AMZN) ranked 10th with about $10 million in
Web advertising spending