Background Advertising

What’s your opinion on “background ads”? They often come up on sites like IMDB and GameSpot, or on other sites with fixed layouts, replacing the normal background image with an ad that seems to have the website floating on top of it.

Do you tend to find this sort of ad annoying, or do you think it’s a smart idea to handle ads that way. I kind of like them. They’re out of the way mainly, and you tend to find them more interesting than a “normal” ad. On the other hand, they kind if detract from a design in some cases, removing some of it’s individuality.

I’ve been seeing the ads more often lately, and IMDB and GameSpot, as I said, tend to get them quite frequently.

On a related note, we may be seeing this sort of thing on Twitter of all places. A new service called Twittad will aid you in finding advertisers to buy your profile’s background for a given time and price. An interesting concept, and I think it will be fun to watch how well this goes over with the Twitter users.

One thing I like about this sort of thing, especially with Twittad, is that there’s no clicking through the ad, away from your site. It’s purely a branding thing. The advertiser isn’t trying to leech your pageviews in order to increase their’s, but to improve the strength of their brand, so people will come there on their own.

  • Heather

    I like them – most of all because they’re not overlays with autoplay movies or sound – and I like the way sites (like your example) integrate them into their look. We’re all cynical to “hype” by now, but it’s still a neat and (imo) polite way to add some excitement for a product.

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