A total of 286 Fortune 500 advertisers launched online advertising campaigns during the last quarter of 2002, compared with only 270 the year before, representing a 6% year-on-year increase, according to the latest 'AdRelevance' research from Nielsen NetRatings.
Fortune 500 advertising has grown steadily over the past year, as large traditional advertisers have discovered how internet media can be used to reach highly desirable target audiences.
Neilsen's research supports the findings of a recent Forrester Research survey (see Dec. 5th, 2002), which revealed that, due largely to the ad-skipping features of personal video recorders (PVRs), US advertisers are reducing television advertising budgets, favouring alternatives such as internet marketing, magazines, and loyalty programmes.
According to Nielsen NetRatings, Amazon.com, which ranks 492nd in the Fortune 500 list, peaked as the top online advertiser in the fourth quarter of 2002. "The stage is set for the internet's share of these companies' marketing budgets to increase throughout 2003," said Charles Buchwalter, vice president of client analytics for Nielsen NetRatings.
Amazon recorded some 12.2 billion internet advert impressions during the busy holiday season of 2002, while cosmetics company, Estee Lauder, claimed second place with 9.5 billion advert impressions. And in third place, USA Interactive reported 7 billion impressions for the quarter. The top five were rounded out by SBC Communications with 6 billion impressions, and Barnes & Noble with 5.8 billion impressions.
"Rich media allows Fortune 500 advertisers, who are used to the live-action and emotion-packed delivery of television, to bring similar messages across media to the online space," explained Buchwalter. "The growing presence of traditional companies employing rich media technologies suggests that large offline players like what they have seen online and are experimenting with new ways to get their messages across."