Google is officially in the interactive advertising game, launching an expanded test of Gadget Ads. These ads are interactive, incorporate real-time data feeds, can be targeted contextually, demographically and geographically, can be placed on any Web page and include detailed tracking information within each ad unit. They are built to include both cost-per-click and cost-per-impression models.
Some of the ad types include mini games, playable movie trailers and a very useful gadget from Nissan - type in your zip code and receive live traffic updates. Currently, the ads are available by invitation only. But look for that to change, and look for gadgets to spring up everywhere, on every Web page.
Will blurring the lines between useful gadgets and advertising work? Early testing shows that just 0.3 percent of those exposed to the Gadget Ads interacted with them. Not a strong start, but look for that to change. As the Web gets flooded with these ads and users learn that clicking on them won't open a series of pop-ups or start a malicious download they will become more accepted and more widely used. Besides, Google rarely swings and misses when it comes to Web advertising.