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Archive for the ‘Advice for Advertisers’ Category

Running multiple ad versions on blogs

by henrycopeland
Monday, November 22nd, 2010

We’ve always known that it’s impossible to predict what types of ads people are going to interact with.

Slight variations in an ad can drive a clickthru rate from .04 to .4%.

With this in mind, we’ve made a bunch of upgrades to ad versioning in the last year. This video sums up the functionality.

New discount blog advertising rates

by henrycopeland
Thursday, November 11th, 2010

We’ve just rolled out a new feature to help bloggers create a Smörgåsbord of discount codes to excite different types of advertisers. Ka-ching!

Cash register

A blogger might decide to give all charity advertisers a 30% discount.

Or a local blog might give a 50% discount to local coffee houses.

Or, the week before Thanksgiving, the blogger might offer a fire sale, posting a 50% discount code on her site to encourage ads over the quiet holiday week.

As always, bloggers will have final say over whether a particular ad will run or not.

Here’s a screenshot of the functionality from the blogger’s perspective:

discount code

To access the functionality, a blogger should log into her account and click “Adstrips” in the nav bar. Then click “customize adstrip.”The blogger just clicks “add another code,” specifies the amount of the discount, the sets a terminal date and voila, the code is enabled. The advertiser uploads the ad during the adbuy process. Remember, ads sold via a blogger’s own site are just 14% fee to Blogads for handling customer support, reporting and accounting. (Cash register photo by Steven Snodgrass.)

More face-time with readers, the secret to Adverpost success

by henrycopeland
Tuesday, October 12th, 2010

We’re continuing to tweak the Adverposts and are very excited by early advertiser feedback.

(Want more info on Adverposts? See this post.)

Recently Little Partners used our new Adverpost unit on parenting blogs like Modern Home Modern Baby, The New Homemaker, Smart Mom Picks, and Smart Mom Deals.

Their product, The Learning Tower, is an adjustable height platform, kind of an upscale toddler step stool with learning built in. Too nuanced and new to summarize in a single image, The Learning Tower seemed perfect for Adverpost.

Last week, I checked in with Damien Lamanna, Digital Media Director at Morgan + Company, who instigated the buy.

Lamanna said the client got a 2.85-fold return on the ad buy, and that’s “without counting any of the long term brand-building.”

Though the Adverpost’s cost-per-click was higher than on other ad units the client tested, visitors referred by the Adverposts spent SEVEN times more time on the advertiser’s site than those referred by other units. Here’s a thumbnail of the ad:

Adverpost baby

Lamanna thinks this higher time-on-site was because Adverpost clickers were already acquainted with the product from reading the ad. Having seen the ad over several days, they were familiar with the product even before clicking. When they clicked, they were primed to engage.

The visual for The Learning Tower’s ad was a rotating flash unit. When they next advertise, we’ll suggest using a static image without any text and adding more links to the ad text.

Update: Adverposts can now include video!

Adverposts: advertising outside the box

by henrycopeland
Monday, September 13th, 2010

We’re introducing two new ad units — one is a large adverpost with 400X400 image plus up to 1000 characters of text and links and the second is 200 X400 pixels plus 500 characters of text. Here’s a 90 second video intro:

When we started Blogads back in 2002, industry players thought we were crazy. Who would advertise on blogs, the online equivalent of a 16-year-old’s diary?

We added insult to injury by conjuring up a new ad unit, the blogad, a small blog-post-like combination of image and text that would run in a narrow column beside blog posts.

Well, media mavens have long since realized that blogs are huge, often bigger than newspapers in traffic and impact. AND advertisers increasingly are realizing that standard IAB units are, too often, invisible cliches.

Advertising RFPs constantly implore publishers to “think outside the box.” Well, if you want to think outside the box, you need to at least escape the 728×90 pixel box everybody else is storing their brains in. So here’s a new box.

The second blog post in the Wonkette screenshot below this paragraph illustrates the smaller “classic” adverpost, which combines an image that’s 200×400 with up to 500 characters of text. (In the real version, the text is regular HTML, ready for copy/paste or lots of clickable links.)


Hence the two new units. The adverpost is a concept honed over the years on Steve Hall’s Adrants. We hope that by making adverposts available to advertisers on hundreds of blogs, the ad unit evolve further and help advertisers better connect with influential blog communities.

Long-time blog advertiser PETA is helping us kick the Adverpost offering on a few blogs. (We’re also adding some IAB units so that advertisers who want to buy those units on our 3500 blogs can more easily do so.)

Amid a Gobi-sized desert of generic media mediocrity, blogs offer both readers and advertisers something special: a gathering of humans. For advertisers looking to tell a story and connect with influential people — as opposed to just getting clicks from random consumers — there’s nothing better.

BTW, if you don’t get the allusions in the video, here’s more on unicorns, Powerthirst, Double rainbows, men in towels, and Chatroulette.

Update: An early adopter of the Adverpost reports that he’s made a 2.85-fold return on his ad buy AND that clickers on the Adverpost spend seven times more time on his site than clickers from other ads.

Update: Adverposts can now include video!

New twist on Twitter advertising: light a tweet bonfire

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, October 14th, 2009

If you’re a DailyKos reader, you’ve probably seen some new ads by the SEIU today appearing at the bottom of posts about health-care.

The ads look like this…

out of pocket

14 states


The images I’ve posted here aren’t actionable, but if you were looking at the real thing as a reader on DailyKos, you’d be able to edit the tweet and post it.

The ads offer a nimble advertiser a quick and easy way to fan the flames of a hot topic, co-joining blog reader passion and a timely topic to trigger a bonfire of tweets. Shazam!

More fun stuff on the way…

Update: PC Magazine chimes in: “If you’re like me, you’ve been losing sleep at night, worrying that third-party companies haven’t been able to effectively leverage the Twitter platform for their advertising benefit. Have no fear! Check out the admittedly clever ad above from the Service Employees International Union.”

GIFs trump Flash

by henrycopeland
Wednesday, September 2nd, 2009

Working with Dynamic Logic, Doubleclick finds:

When you add up performance across all the brand metrics studied, simple Flash ads provide less brand impact than any other format – even GIFs and JPEGs. It turns out all those advertisers who served simple Flash ads through DoubleClick last year could’ve saved themselves some time and hassle by simply producing animated GIFs. 

Taking this a step further, don’t forget, we’ve found animation usually reduces clicks.

Barking up the wrong tree?

by henrycopeland
Monday, August 26th, 2002

An estimated $236 billion will be spent this year in the US on traditional print, broadcast, radio and online advertising.

Frustrated that their money is being wasted, some advertisers are resorting to hiring models to infiltrate us with their products. Here are some other wacked promotions: “Procter & Gamble sent out a trailer of elegant, air- conditioned Porta Potties, complete with hardwood floors and aromatherapy candles, to state fairs last summer to extol the virtues of Charmin toilet paper. Bottled-water producer Evian paid to repair a run-down public pool in the London neighborhood of Brixton and tile the bottom with its brand name ‘ a message that was hard to miss for passengers flying in and out of nearby Heathrow Airport.”

Umm. Why not spend some of the $236 billion on media that people actually shout about?
Hint. Hint. Hint.
Hint. Hint.

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