You are more likely to give birth to twins or complete the extremely demanding Navy SEAL Training course, than to click on a banner advertisement – and did you know that 50% of banner ad clicks are accidental?

These are some of the knowledge nuggets from Rakuten MediaForge’s director of sales, Alex Cornford, and vice president of product marketing for MediaForge, Danny Kourianos – in light of the company’s new structure. 

In a presentation yesterday, performance marketing network Rakuten LinkShare, now known as Rakuten Marketing, outlined its new approach to its digital marketing strategy. Under the Rakuten Marketing umbrella there is now the affiliate marketing brand; Rakuten LinkShare, and the display and re-targeting branch; Rakuten MediaForge.

New Name, Increased Focus

London-based Cornford and Salt Lake City-based Kourianos, stressed that long gone are the days of basic, poor performing display ads – and in comes more personalised dynamic ads in the affiliate channel.

By moving both the LinkShare and MediaForge brands under the broader ‘marketing’ term, the aim is to provide clients with a more holistic offering.

During the presentation in London, Cornford, who said that ‘personalisation is key’, explained how there were some ‘horrifying stats’ about display adverts. However, from website search bars placed within display ads and other embedded web-like capabilities, to direct social network links and more, he stressed that in actual fact, a company’s ‘wildest advertising dreams’ can become a reality when it comes to display.

To empower advertisers to make the right decisions when exploring campaign metrics, Rakuten MediaForge says optimising campaigns for impressions, post-impression attribution, and click-through rate (CTR) does not give an adequate understanding of campaign performance, and that post-engagement is able to substantiate performance with much more meaningful results.

Ad Personalisation

MediaForge said gender-targeted ads do boost clicks and increase sales – as it did for online apparel retailer of streetwear fashion, Karmaloop.

Results found that users who clicked through the male gender-specific ads were three times more likely to purchase than those who clicked through gender-neutral ads. Users who clicked through female gender-specific ads were two times more likely to purchase than those who clicked through gender-neutral ads.

Overall click-through rate increased by 24%, average revenue-per-unique-user reached by 24.7% and Karmaloop’s retargeting average order value increased by nearly 9%.

Managing director of Rakuten Marketing, Mark Haviland, said as its clients evolve their approach to audiences, they have to adapt the company’s structure and service offering to meet their needs.

“It’s no longer enough to be expert in a single and often isolated field,” Haviland said.

“By adding services to our portfolio, and enabling our clients to go global with these services, we’re working to ensure we provide a more sophisticated cross-channel view.”