Clicktag

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Summary

A click tag is a parameter used in Flash banner ads. The parameter is a variable that defines the destination URL from the markup code. By using a click tag, the advertiser can easily see and modify the URL without a Flash developer.

The click tag enables the ad serving network to gain metrics such as the amount of clicks and views or which sites these clicks and views have been made. By reading the data gained by the click tag parameter, an advertiser can evaluate how effective the ad campaign has been.


Variations

There are no industry standards on how to program a click tag. The code for the programming is case-sensitive, but programmers format their capitalization differently so ad serving networks may require clickTAG, ClickTag, clickTag, or any variation of capitalization for that specific variable.

Some ad serving networks may also require the ad's programmer to specific the level or strata the advertisement directs to such as the Google click tag requirements.[1] Other ad serving networks such as Myspace do not require root level specification.[2]

Ad serving networks may also require protocol specification by forcing the URL to begin with "http:" as a security measure advised by Adobe. Adobe warns that a malicious website could source the banner and pass a URL that beings with "javascript;" or another pseudo-protocol creating a hole for malicious scripts. This would allow someone access to the site's data, cookies, or can perform actions on behalf of the website where the ad is placed.[3]

Click tags also vary depending on the version of Flash or Actionscript used.


References

  1. "What are the requirements for Flash ads?". Google. http://adwords.google.com/support/aw/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=26938. 
  2. "Myspace Flash Design Checklist". Myspace. http://www.myspace.com/adspecs?content=flashdesignchecklist. 
  3. "Designer's Guide: Building Macromedia Flash Banners with Tracking Capabilities". Adobe. http://www.adobe.com/resources/richmedia/tracking/designers_guide/. 
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