August 09, 2006

Small Trivia - Who and When Sold the First Banner?!

The first banner sold by HotWired, an pioneer in commercial web publishing started by Wired Magazine, was paid for by AT&T, and was put online on October 25, 1994.

HotWired was the first web site to sell banner ads in large quanities to a wide range of major corporate advertisers. Andrew Anker was HotWired's first CEO. Rick Boyce, a former media buyer with San Francisco advertising agency Hal Riney & Parnters, spearheaded the sales effort for the company. When HotWired was sold to Lycos, Boyce became its Vice President of Sales.

HotWired coined the term "banner ad" and was the first company to provide click through rate reports to its customers.

The world's first banner was quite the ugly thing and clicking it will not take you to the AT&T website, but just may take you somewhere else.

But back in the day, this would have been clicked on a lot, probably because nobody had seen anything like it. Today of course, we’ve got Flash, video and interactive banner advertising. And banner ads are now seen as an integral branding tool in the marketing mix.



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