The user profile across interactive services on satellite in the UK broadly reflects that of the satellite audience in general, but advertisers must work harder to get their message across in interactive adverts.

Data released by BARB shows that the audience profile for interactive services on digital satellite in the UK is skewed towards children, particularly 4-9 year olds, and adults under 45, notably 25-34 year olds. The audience profile is equally split between male and female. Of those with satellite television, a smaller proportion of those aged 16-24 or over 65 appear to use interactive services. Other age groups are broadly representative of the satellite audience.

The data relate to January 2005 and BARB notes that the profile may vary through the year according to the types of service available. The figures represent all interactive services identified in the broadcast stream, including games and advertising.

However, a report from media sales house IDS says that interactive advertisers must try harder to get their message across. Their research shows that some adverts failed to engage interactive viewers because their on-screen red button prompts were too well integrated with the commercial.

The study revealed that the number of users fell by 80% when the call to action was integrated within the advertisement rather than simply superimposed as a banner. It also found that viewers were more than two and a half times more likely to interact if prompted verbally by the commercial.

The research is reported in a free guide to demystifying interactive advertising published by IDS.