Advertising Specifications

Premium Rich Media Sponsor

Advertisers can run the Premium Rich Media Sponsor in one of two ways. As an IAB expanding Sidekick, or as a stationary video banner.

In either option, the ad position is in the right rail. Placement in the right rail depends on the PennWell brand and the site section.

OPTION ONE: Sidekick

An IAB "Rising Star" expanding ad unit that must be 3rd party served.

PennWell Sidekick Specifications

Advertiser provides these specs to vendor:

Dimensions: 300w x 250h – Messaging Plus Unit (MPU); 850w x 700h - fully expanded Sidekick Panel
Maximum File Size: Sidekick Panel-100k; 300x250 Ad-100k
File Format: .SWF, .GIF, .JPG
Close Button: Sidekick Panel-Must contain a visible Close button in the upper left hand corner of the expanded Sidekick panel.
Click to Open: 300x250: Must contain an explicit call-to-action which allows a user to CLICK to expand the Sidekick panel.
Animation: Sidekick Panel-The expanded Sidekick will animate uninitiated for a maximum of 8 seconds.  For user initiated expand, unlimited animation allowed. 300x250-30 seconds maximum.
Video: Available in the Sidekick panel or the 300x250 only. NOT allowed to run video in both ads concurrently. One video file up to 1.2 MB. All video must have Play, Stop and Sound On/Off controls visible throughout the entire video display.
Audio: Must be initiated by click. For user initiated expand of the Sidekick panel, audio can start in On position.
Frame Rate: Flash- 20 frames per second maximum; Video- 30 frames per second
Maximum CPU Consumption: Vendor's technology should consume no more than 25% of users CPU resources on an average system.
Expand Panel Position: The Sidekick expand panel must be positioned 60px to the right of the 300x250 ad with the tops of the ads aligned vertically.
Default Gif/JPG: 300x250-Default image is required for Flash submission. 50k maximum file size.
Third Party Tracking: Accepted on the linking URLs.  A tracking 1x1 URL is also accepted.
Testing: Must function uniformly on both Windows and Mac OS X operating systems as well as the following browsers: Internet Explorer, Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari for Mac OS X.Note: If the submitted creative does not conform to the above specifications, it will not be placed online and may result in a delayed launch date.

OPTION TWO: Video Banner

A stationary, non-expanding video hosted at PennWell.

PennWell Video Banner Specifications

Dimension:  512x288 (16:9) OR 480x320 (4:3)
Bit Rate: Min. 500kbps and Max. 800kbps
Video Duration: 30 seconds recommended
File Format: h.264 or mp4
Click Through URL: Yes, provide URL
Text Overlay: When a user mouses over a text overlay can display. Please limit to 30 characters. (e.g. “Visit our website”)
Note: The player is sized at 300 x 250, including controls. The dimensions for the video represent the best fit for the player based on standard video sizes and an effort to maximize quality.


Why 3rd Party Ad Serving?

The Sidekick ad is one of six "Rising Star" ad formats introduced by the IAB. These "Rising Star" ad units were chosen to be the next generation of IAB rich media ad formats due to thier outstanding performance in engaging readers. The Sidekick will help marketers tell captivating stories about their brand! The expanded panel of the Sidekick is essentially a microsite which does not interupt the user's reading experience. This expanding ad unit's complexity requires the advertiser to create and host the ad with a third party.

What is 3rd Party Ad Serving?

Instead of providing us creative files to be hosted on our Publisher Ad Server you will create and host the creative through a Rich Media Vendor Ad Server. When the creative is ready on their system you will generate an "Ad Tag", which will be emailed to us as a .txt file. This Ad Tag will be loaded into our Publisher Ad Server and when a user loads a page with your creative assigned, our ad server will re-direct the ad request to the 3rd Party Rich Media Ad Server.


Where Do I Obtain 3rd Party Ad Serving?

This depends on the skill-set and availability of your creative team. If you  need assistance with the ad creation, and programming of your ad then please call the PennWell Marketing Solutions team. If however, your team has experience with creation of rich media and HTML5 then you may choose to create the ad units yourselves and contract directly with a 3rd Party Ad Serving firm.

The advertiser or agency will select and work directly with the vendor of their choice to create and host the Sidekick ad. Simply provide them with a link to this page so they will build the ad to match PennWell's specifications. You should anticipate a fee for the ad serving. Ads with video may also be quoted higher than a banner with simple animation. Your PennWell sales representative can tell you the estimated number of ad impressions. Divide that number by 1,000 and multiply the result by the CPM price quote from the 3rd party rich media vendor.

Below is contact information for PennWell Marketing Solutions and a short, but by no means comprehensive, list of 3rd Party Rich Media vendors.

PennWell Marketing Solutions
The PennWell Marketing Solutions team can both create your ads and serve them via our third party platform. We can manage this ad process from start to end so that you can manage your business. Please note there are additional fees that will be incurred to create the ad and/or serve them.  For additional information and a quote, please contact or visit  to view our portfolio of work.

Other firms that also offer these services:
Pictela, Inc
 , Flite, MediaMind and PointRoll's Composer Ad Builder  

Examples for the Premium Rich Media Sponsor Ad Position

Important Note: Only one allowed per page. Two shown here as there are two options to choose between.