Meet Microsoft’s New Banner

AOL has its Portrait unit, Microsoft now has the Filmstrip.

Microsoft debuted the unit, chosen along with Portrait in an industry search for new banner implementations, on Friday with an ad for Dodge as part of the carmaker’s Grand Caravan “Never Neutral” campaign. The unit will be available across MSN in the U.S. by the summer, the company said in a blog post.
The Filmstrip is a larger unit than the standard right side box ad MSN’s home page normally carries. It is similar to a skyscraper unit, but it shows a sequence of five screens with video and the ability to shift content from within the banner. The Dodge ad uses video footage of the car’s interior. SapientNitro built the ad for Dodge.
Microsoft intends the unit to be more than just solitary executions. As it rolls out across the MSN network, the company will use roll out the ads in a specific sequence to communicate a broader message.
The Flimstrip, Devil and other new ad units were rolled out by the Interactive Advertising Bureau as part of an effort to improve the creative options for advertisers without alienating users. The question for Microsoft and AOL is whether they’ll lead to an uptick in brand advertising — and the ad rates that come with it — than current banner offerings. The Filmstrip is mostly user-initiated, with the Dodge execution not having sound or any interruptive elements.

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