RESTON, VA: Digital display ads appearing on premium publishing sites deliver significantly better branding effectiveness results across a number of measures, a new study has claimed.

comScore, the analytics business, examined the branding effectiveness of digital display ads appearing on sites belonging to members of the Digital Content Next (DCN), a trade group of brand name digital publishers, compared to non-member sites.

It found that such ads on these premium publisher sites had an average of 67% higher brand lift than non-DCN publishers – which it said confirmed that premium sites deliver premium performance.

Further, it reported that premium publishers were more than three times more effective in driving mid-funnel brand lift metrics such as favourability, consideration and intent to recommend.

It attributed this increased effectiveness primarily to the 'halo effect' of the contextual environment in which the ads were seen.

In addition, premium publisher effectiveness was driven in part by higher viewability rates which include lower levels of invalid traffic.

"comScore's research clearly connects the dots between high-quality media brands and the value that trusted environments deliver," said Jason Kint, CEO of DCN.

"In the growing list of reasons why brand marketers need to know where their advertising campaigns are running, this independent report hits the nail on the head," he added.

comScore observed that the increased mid-funnel performance was especially significant for the large consumer brands that drive the majority of digital ad spending.

These brands tend to have already established high brand awareness, it noted, and therefore prefer to focus more on influencing how consumers feel about the brand so that they are more likely to purchase that brand when in the market to do so.

"The data suggest that premium publishers may do a particularly effective job at moving the needle at this key phase of the marketing funnel," it said.

Data sourced from comScore; additional content by Warc staff