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Microsoft Advertising puts ads on Skype

Since getting the popular communication tool Skype on board, Microsoft Advertising has been looking for ways to monetise the product, and it has found the solution by offering what it calls the Conversation Ads to brands. The unique selling proposition: clean, uncluttered canvas that displays products and services matching the conversation the Skype users might be having at that moment.

“It’s been a whirlwind since Skype joined Microsoft!  Right from the start, we’ve been working together to identify ad opportunities that strike the right balance between protecting the wonderful Skype consumer experience and creating meaningful opportunities that enable you to tell brand stories.  Today, we’re pleased to share the first outcome from this collaboration – our Conversation Ad unit, an opportunity that allows you to be a part of the 1 billion Skype-to-Skype calls that happen every day,” said Joslyn Moore, General Manager, Advertising Incubations, Microsoft Advertising.

The company claims that the Conversation Ad unit is premium space within an uncluttered environment, providing brands the opportunity to target a captive, influential and global audience of consumers across over 55 markets where Skype is available. Currently Skype is available in Taiwan, Japan, Southeast Asia, and Hong Kong.

Moore informed that a research on Skype user behaviour shows that people on Skype are more likely to discuss products, make recommendations, and decide what to buy with their close relatives and friends. And this is where brands can pitch in with targeted advertising which will make them literally the centre of conversation. “This is an extraordinary opportunity to make a meaningful impact, and allow people to discuss the brand stories they are seeing in real time,” she said.

The Conversation Ad is a 300 x 250 unit which appears during one-to-one audio calls in the Skype Windows client. The ad modules are silent so it doesn’t interrupt the consumer experience.  In fact Microsoft Advertising is expected to bring in more innovations into this ad product to help brands reach and engage consumers in a more effective way.

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