Virtual Ads


Virtual Advertisements are anywhere that you can digitally place an ad. There are ads on the side of football stadiums that have been digitally imposed as well as in many video games as billboards while one plays the game. Virtual advertisements can be placed into regular television programs through computer graphics. It is usually inserted into otherwise negative (or white) backdrops or used to replace local billboards that are not relevant to the remote target audience of the broadcast. More controversially, virtual billboards may be inserted into the background where none exist in real-life. This technique is especially used in televised sporting events. Virtual product placement is also possible, such as placing the Coca-Cola logo on a soda can or the Lays logo on a bag of generic chips that a character may be drinking or eating.

There are many advantages of virtual advertisements. Many people can see your ad and it isn't as "in-your-face" as some of the new media advertising can be. You can reach your specific targets as well, such as those who enjoy watching sports with graphically inserting your advertising image into a baseball, football, soccer, or hockey game etc. You could reach teen audiences with the video game virtual advertisement places, as well as many different demographics with the many different types of shows that are on television every night.

There are of course limitations to using virtual advertisements as well. When advertising in a sporting event, your image may become cluttered with the many other advertisers that have virtually placed their ad as well. Also, virtual advertisements are placed in media in which the advertisement can be over-looked. Many people probably don't notice the Coca-Cola can that their favorite character on a TV show is drinking, or the advertisements on the sides of football stadiums because they are too into the game.


Reach and Frequency:
Virtual advertisements have a good reach and frequency. By placing an virtual ad in the middle of the field during a Super Bowl game would get a massive amount of reach at one time as millions of people tune into watch the Super Bowl each year. If the ad remains on the field or on the sidelines for most of the game then the advertisers might begin to get some frequency with those consumers who notice the ad more than once. Video games also get a good reach and frequency combination. At the release of a new video game the advertiser would get much reach frequency with the first time play of the game, but as the game has been released for longer and longer periods of time the advertiser would gain momentum in frequency because of the same kids playing the video game multiple times.

The scheduling for virtual advertisements could be either continuous or more of a flighting or pulsing strategy depending on where the virtual ads are placed. Advertisements in video games can be more continuous because the ad that was bought can stay in the whole entire game that was purchased by the specific consumer so that they will see it every time they play, which is almost every day for the typical gamer or teenager. Sports advertisements are more of a flighting schedule because one would only advertise during the specific sports season that they wish, but could be pulsing if they advertise during every sports season as there is one during fall, winter, spring, and summer.

Virtual advertisers expect many different responses when placing their ads. Placing an advertisement in a video game will hopefully bring the response of the more teenage/male demographic while placing ads in football games will bring the male demographic of many different ages. More recently women have become a big demographic when it comes to sports, so many advertisers are beginning to advertise to them as well in the hopes of getting a response. All advertisers hope for the response of generating purchase intent by the demographic of the consumers that they are targeting.


Advertisers Utilizing Virtual Ads:
There are many advertisers who take advantage of virtual advertising. A few of them include:

  • McDonalds
  • Subway
  • Burger King
  • Pepsi
  • Wal-Mart
  • Coca-Cola
  • Gatorade
  • And many more...