CredSpark Case Study

Using Question-Based Interactions to Grow Advertising Revenue

What are the most important outcomes your sponsors want from your advertising offerings?

What are the most important outcomes your sponsors want from your advertising offerings?

What are the most important outcomes your sponsors want from your advertising offerings?

We think it’s context and actionable information.

Impressions. Clicks. Audience Targeting. Placement. Traffic. Leads.

Advertising-driven media organizations all compete on the basics. And these are important factors that sponsors use to determine the efficiency of their advertising dollars and the efficacy of the vehicles on which they spend them. However, ultimately these data are transactional and unidimensional; they don’t tell you much beyond actions.

What if you could deliver sponsored interactions that create value for your audience, instead of interruption? That dwarf the engagement of traditional online ads? And deliver reams of zero-party data and actionable insights into intent, budget, preferences, needs, interests, and more? What would your sponsors pay for that?

The following case study explores the value of question-based interactions in advertising, presents use cases geared towards specific advertising goals, and provides outcome data and real-world examples of question-based, sponsored interactions deployed by CredSpark clients. Scroll to explore the entire case study or use the synopsis to jump to specific sections of interest. 

Case Study Synopsis

  • Actions are Not Interactions: How Deeper Engagement Leads to Deeper Data
  • DataPoint: Time Spent on Online Ads vs. CredSpark Interactions
  • Future-Proof Your Place in a Post-Cookie World: Audience Knowledge is the Essential Differentiator
  • Interaction: How Future-Proof Are Your Current Ad Programs?
  • Hyper-Qualify Your Lead Gen Programs: Move From Volume-Driven Noise to Quality-Driven Clarity
  • DataPoint: Average Number of Data Points for a Single CredSpark Interaction
  • Your Audience Isn’t Static. Your Ad Program Shouldn’t Be Either. How to Leverage Progressive Profiling
  • Leverage Personalization to Drive Actions: Surface Relevance for Each Individual
  • Explore Examples: Real-World Applications from CredSpark Clients
  • Get Ideas, Insights, & Inspiration: Want to Connect with CredSpark?
  • Additional Resources: More Strategies and Innovations in Data-Driven Advertising

What are Question-Based Interactions?

Actions are not interactions. Metrics are not context. Audience Intelligence is everything.

Online advertising is often described as “interactive.” However, clicks and views are actions. They tell you one thing. True interactions involve an ongoing exchange of information. That exchange is where the opportunity lies. Effective question-based interactions use the dynamics of conversation (and in many cases, learning and discovery) to maintain the level of engagement from participants. During that back-and-forth engagement, data collection becomes a more natural part of the user experience, yielding you and your sponsors more information and insights.

When you create discovery-based experiences around sponsor content, products, or services, your audience can progressively and more deeply interact with them, generating zero-party data along the way. Moreover, these interactions allow you to create a level of personalization at scale by directing users down different pathways based on their previous responses or actions. The results of this activity provide you not only with actionable data, but with important insights and context on what’s driving that activity (and what’s not). Question-based interactions give you and your sponsors a fuller, more robust picture of your audience and their propensity to interact further. 

What are Question-Based Interactions?

Actions are not interactions. Metrics are not context. Audience Intelligence is everything.

Online advertising is often described as “interactive.” However, clicks and views are actions. They tell you one thing. True interactions involve an ongoing exchange of information. That exchange is where the opportunity lies. Effective question-based interactions use the dynamics of conversation (and in many cases, learning and discovery) to maintain the level of engagement from participants. During that back-and-forth engagement, data collection becomes a more natural part of the user experience, yielding you and your sponsors more information and insights.

When you create discovery-based experiences around sponsor content, products, or services, your audience can progressively and more deeply interact with them, generating zero-party data along the way. Moreover, these interactions allow you to create a level of personalization at scale by directing users down different pathways based on their previous responses or actions. The results of this activity provide you not only with actionable data, but with important insights and context on what’s driving that activity (and what’s not). Question-based interactions give you and your sponsors a fuller, more robust picture of your audience and their propensity to interact further. 

Top media brands are innovating around
audience attention and knowledge metrics.

Forward-thinking media brands are using interactive content to gain deeper understanding into audience knowledge on everything from topical subject matter to sponsor brand awareness. From simple, one-question interactions to full assessments, media businesses are redefining how their audiences interact with content, maintain attention and engagement, and generate high-quality, high-value data and insights.

Top media brands are innovating around
audience attention and knowledge metrics.

Forward-thinking media brands are using interactive content to gain deeper understanding into audience knowledge on everything from topical subject matter to sponsor brand awareness. From simple, one-question interactions to full assessments, media businesses are redefining how their audiences interact with content, maintain attention and engagement, and generate high-quality, high-value data and insights.

DataPoint

Interaction-driven engagement drives better outcomes.

6.6 sec

Average time spent with an online display ad. (Statista)

155 sec

Average time spent with a CredSpark interaction.

The Concept of Audience Knowledge

Future-Proof Your Place in a Post-Cookie World.

As the digital advertising business shifts from cookie-based surveillance marketing and users get more savvy and more control over their personal data, advertising-focused media businesses will have to adapt. There is overwhelming agreement in the industry that proprietary audience data will be a crucial element for success in the post-cookie world.

Question-based interactions are an exceptionally effective way to grow and deepen your audience data. The information you gain from sponsored interactions can be augmented with your own editorial-based interactions on your websites, embedded in content, through social channels, in email newsletters, and more.

As you develop your data strategy, think beyond key metrics and demographic data. Instead, think in terms of Audience Knowledge. What does your audience know about the key subjects, topics, data, etc. that are important for your markets and your sponsors? When you create interactions that capture that information, you can pinpoint strengths and gaps in audience knowledge and that can subsequently surface opportunities for sponsor products and services.

Data is data. It’s not useful unless it leads to understanding. Question-based interactions can be an important bridge between data collection and a more complete understanding of your audience’s needs, goals, interests, intent, and more.

CredSpark Interaction

How Future-Proof Are Your Current Ad Programs?

Answer the following questions and assess how your current advertising/sponsorship programs compare to your peers in the industry.

Sponsored Lead Generation Programs

Move from volume-driven noise to quality-driven clarity.

The days of pointing a fire hose at a sponsor and blasting the lead information of anyone with a pulse are finally over. Question-based interactions create an opportunity for media businesses to become true (and reliable) partners to the marketing and sales teams of their advertisers. They enable you to provide actionable sales intelligence on each individual lead, creating the potential for a premium, ongoing lead gen program for prospective sponsors.

The assessment and personalization capabilities of question-based interactions allow you to incorporate the specific lead qualification and scoring factors of a sponsor into an interaction in a seamless, natural experience for the user. Your sponsors get actionable intent data while your audience is engaged and gets demonstrable value in return, unlike traditional, more mercenary online lead collection efforts.

You’re now delivering much more than contact information. You’re delivering hyper-qualified leads with detailed and perceptive insights that can be used by sales and marketing teams to develop much more informed and personalized follow up communications.

When it comes to sponsored lead generation programs, question-based interactions provide clear competitive advantage over traditional digital lead collection efforts—and that means pricing power.

DataPoint

The depth and quality of proprietary audience data is the critical strategic advantage for media businesses.

2,770

Average Number of Data Points in a Single CredSpark Interaction

Sponsored Lead Generation Programs

Your audience isn’t static. Your advertising program shouldn’t be either.

Audience interactions are snapshots in time. A “no” to a sponsor today could be a “yes” in the near future, under the right conditions. Progressive Profiling is a highly effective way to gain deeper audience insights longitudinally over time.

Use multiple question-based interactions in tandem to keep prospects engaged with sponsor content while simultaneously gathering additional qualifying information, including budget, timing, interest, and more.

Progressive profiling allows you to develop a steady stream of hyper-qualified leads and sales intelligence for sponsors over longer periods of time—improving pricing power while reducing advertiser churn.

Responsive, Personalized Advertising Experiences

Surface relevance for each individual audience member to more effectively drive the desired next step.

Question-based interactions can support personalization in advertising in two key ways. First, because data is being collected throughout the interaction, different questions or elements can be presented based on the answers or activity from previous ones, allowing for personalized paths through an experience or a “choose your own adventure” type of experience through a sponsor’s content, products, or services.

Results and outcomes can also be personalized based on a user’s responses throughout an interaction. This enables actionable next steps for each user which vastly improves follow through metrics like lead information capture, adds to cart, subscription take rates, newsletter sign ups, and more. Examples include providing personalized product recommendations, grouping like audience members together to foster community, creating custom reading lists, pairing particular sponsors to individual audience members, and much more.

The personalization capabilities of question-based interactions are virtually limitless and provide you with an exceptionally powerful value proposition for potential sponsors.

Relevant Examples

Explore real-world applications of data-rich advertising.

Click to view each specific interaction and learn more about the outcomes for sponsors and advertisers.

Interested in ideas, innovations, and inspiration for your advertising programs?

Reach out. We’d love to share ideas and best practices to help you create compelling, results-driven advertising and sponsorship programs for your organization.

Additional Resources

Strategies and Insights on Data-Driven Advertising

Eyeballs, Engagement, & Insights

How Data-Driven, Interactive Advertising Can Help You Win in a Post-Cookie World. Here's 5 opportunities you might be missing out on.
Rough sea

The Secrets to Turning Audience Engagement into Sponsor Revenue

How data-rich, sponsored interactions can turn the tide in an uncertain digital advertising market.
Two dogs looking for attention

Can I have your attention, please?

Here are a few insights that you can incorporate into your content creation process to dramatically improve your attention metrics.