125 x 125 Pixels Ad Challenge

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Topics can sometimes grow organically as you write about them and do a little research.  The topic here was to throw out a challenge to develop the best 125px x 125px ad since I had developed one today that I thought was pretty good.  I still would be interested to hear whether you can do better than the ad on the right here.  However there’s more to all this than meets the eye.

The History Of 125 X 125 Pixels Ads

I always like to do a little research to flesh out any blog post.  It appears that the 125 X 125 Pixels Ad was invented by Nik Cubrilovic of TechCrunch probably in 2006.  That comes from a very recent blog post of Michael Arrington,  founder of TechCrunch, who should be an authoritative source.  Hat tip to Todd Garland for that.

That ad format was a real winner as you can see in a 2007 blog post that Darren Rowse wrote:

Over the past 6 to 12 months the 125 x 125 pixel advertisement has emerged onto the blogging scene as a fairly common means of advertising.  I don’t know who did it first – but there are hundreds (if not thousands) of blogs using it. Some of the more prominent ones include TechCrunch, Read/WriteWeb, CopyBlogger and John Chow – but there are many hundreds others. In fact over at b5media we have them on all of our 250+ blogs.

The ad format is so versatile that it is not surprising to see the explosive growth that has occurred since then.  It provides a reasonable amount of visibility for a more economic price than larger display ads.

What A 125Px X 125Px Should Do For You

The ad may be economic but the challenge is how best to use such a small space. It is interesting to consider that question in terms of that simple marketing view of how sales occur.  You may have heard the acronym, AIDA.  That stands for:

  Awareness >> Interest >>  Desire  >> Action.

Prospective customers must be moved through these different phases as they change from ignorance of the product through to making the purchase.

The 125 x 125 pixels ad has a link attached so the action is clear.  How far up the AIDA scale can that small parcel of screen real estate move the visitor?  If done well, as the visitor clicks through to another web page, ideally there is a desire to buy.  Does your 125 x 125 pixels ad achieve that?