IN2 (www.in2.com), a year-old agency specializing in interactive banners, has recently signed up new clients BarnesandNoble.com, Lycos and Quick & Reilly, and won new business from iVillage and CMP Media.
The agency's aim is to bring qualified users to advertisers' sites through interactive polling, searching and other direct response activities within banner ads. IN2 executives said users who engage in interactive ads are more likely prospects when they're linked to an advertiser's site.
"We can track in real time the interests of people coming to the site on a site-by-site basis, and this helps give our clients insight on editorial content," said James Healy, president-CEO of IN2.
IN2's polling banners proved so effective for existing client iVillage's Parent Soup area-garnering a 10% to 30% click-through rate-that the community-based Web site (www.ivillage.com) recently awarded the creative business for its About Work area to IN2.
Creative for About Work, an area of iVillage devoted to careers, had been handled by TN Technologies' Modem Media, Westport, Conn. That relationship ended on mutually agreeable terms, said Hillary Graves, iVillage's director of marketing.
"In addition to IN2's creative, which is excellent, their tracking is very analytical," said Ms. Graves. She said IN2's ability to deliver real-time reporting on responses within banner ads is helping iVillage adjust its overall creative strategy.
For example, IN2 developed a drop-down banner for iVillage that asked users to rank their preferences for various Parent Soup discussion groups, including toddlers, teens, pregnancy and other topics, and then linked directly to those areas.
The interactive ad stirred such response to the teen-age discussion group that iVillage created a new general banner for its Teen Madness area. iVillage is also adjusting banners running on various sites, such as Women's Wire and Lycos, depending on how users are responding to the questions asked within the ads.
If users on Women's Wire choose pregnancy as their No. 1 interest, for example, iVillage might run more banner ads for its pregnancy content on Women's Wire (www.womenswire.com).
In addition to the drop-down ads, IN2 created poll banners for iVillage asking questions such as, "At what age would you let your daughter date?" to drive traffic to Parent Soup, where results are tabulated in real time.
SEARCH WITHI AN AD
In a campaign for Barnes & Noble's site (www.barnesandnoble.com) that broke Aug. 11, IN2 developed an interactive banner that lets users search for book titles within the ad. In the first four days the banner ran, it had a click-through rate of 26%. Susan Boster, director of marketing for BarnesandNoble.com, called that "phenomenal."
"It gives the user the opportunity to interact with the company and ask for specific information," she said. "You're not just clicking through a billboard to a home page."
IN2 is now developing an interactive banner campaign for Lycos.
And last week, IN2 launched a poll banner campaign for CMP, under contract for Cone Interactive, for the launch of CMPnet (www.cmpnet.com), the computer