RealTime IT News

BlueStreak.com Beefs Up Rich Media Ad Serving Technology

Rich media advertising players BlueStreak.com on Thursday took the wraps off its enhanced ad serving solution -- dubbed RADAR -- the company's answer to targeted advertising technology.

Because the company's rich media banners must be served through the BlueStreak.com serving system, RADAR (which stands for "Real time Access to Data, Analysis and Response") is its solution to demand for more highly-targeted advertising.

Interestingly, rather than adopting the individual profiling approach, like Engage Inc. and DoubleClick Inc. have used, BlueStreak.com is using what it calls an "aggregate targeting solution."

What this means is that ads aren't targeted to specific individuals, but the technology "observes" consumer behavior with respect to the ad -- click-through, interaction with the banner, conversions -- and changes the creative in response to the aggregate reaction.

The system, using artificial intelligence, even notices changes in the patterns caused by outside events -- time of day, change of season, news events, etc. -- and, although it doesn't necessarily know why a new pattern is establishing itself, the system can change the creative to maximize results.

Stefan Tornquist, director of marketing for BlueStreak.com, described a campaign for AT&T that had two versions of the creative. There was a dry, factual banner that described the company's long distance service, and a playful banner that featured Cupid shooting an arrow.

"What we found is that the factual banner did well on the weekdays," said Tornquist, "and on the weekends, the system rotated in the more playful banner."

One of the benefits of such a system, of course, is that it avoids charges of invasion of privacy, by not compiling data profiles on particular individuals. Web surfers don't need to accept cookies, with the BlueStreak.com system.

"Privacy is a major concern for al Internet users," said Annette Tonti, president of BlueStreak.com.

"But those of us who are working to improve online marketing don't want to give up the promise of the medium, which is the right ad, in the right place, at the right time."

Still, RADAR doesn't answer all of the questions marketers might have. Although it can track interaction with a banner when it is served, because it doesn't set a cookie there is no way for BlueStreak.com to determine whether a user visits the advertiser's Web site, or makes a purchase, at a later date. The company says it is working on strategic partnerships to address this issue.