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Back in April, AdBrite launched their Open Targeting Exchange. Today AdBrite is announcing the launch of a behavioral targeting product within their ad network. They note that their behavioral network is five times larger than any of their competitors. From the announcement, "Leveraging technology from AdBrite’s Open Targeting Exchange (OTEx), AdBrite’s new Behavioral Targeting service allows advertisers to show ads to users with interest and/or purchase intent in 14 major categories and over 3,000 sub-categories."
Pricing is set via a real-time auction. The new behavioral product is only available to a select group of advertisers on an invitation-only basis. Computers and Internet are not initial launch categories. Instead they have (smartly) selected more monetizable categories including: Automotive, Business & Finance, Careers, Consumer Electronics, Dating & Singles, Health, Music, and Travel.
It’s good to see AdBrite testing out new advertising options. By pushing forward, it can help them draw in additional advertisers to the AdBrite system as a whole.
My issue with AdBrite since their initial launch was the lack of advertisers. Having a million publishers is great but if there are no advertisers to fill the ads, it means nothing. AdBrite noted that they have 70,000 active publishers, up from 50,000 at the beginning of 2008. I’d prefer to see fill rate and total number of advertisers (not including ebaumsworld).
Veoh launched their behavioral targeted ad network last week. And ValueClick is expected to announce their behavioral ad product today as well. Here’s a very short video from eMarketer on behavioral targeting:
Online advertising network AdBrite (our coverage) is announcing the launch of the Open Targeting Exchange or OTX today. I have to say that it took me a bit of time to understand what this OTX does and I’ve bought hundreds of millions in media over my career.
Here is how the Open Targeting Exchange works. Basically if you imagine that there three parts of the ad transaction: the ad, the network serving the ad and the page view displaying the ad. Normally the middle piece of serving the ad is through some proprietary matching process by the ad network. AdBrite has ripped open that piece of the transaction and is allowing other companies to plug their matching process algorithms into the ad serving portion.
AdBrite claims publishers will benefit from improving revenue yield, and advertisers will generate better results. OTX launches with two initial partners, Lucid Media (formerly Entrieva) and Personifi, who provide contextual matching algorithms for text ads.
The Web page explaining how the OTX works only has one large graphic that really doesn’t explain much about the service. If the average media buyer is going to get excited about this launch, there will need to be more text and more pictures – maybe even a video.
Looks like the majority of the bloggers listed on Techmeme just reported on the funding. Allow me to give you my current thoughts on AdBrite. AdBrite has a few large publishers but outside of that, the market is made up of very small players. AdBrite has a different model than most ad networks. A publisher places the tracking code on their site and then that reports numbers back to AdBrite who then lists you on their site for advertisers to buy ads on.
The issue with this is that many of the sites listed have close to no traffic and therefore get no real visibility and very few sales. Smaller sites are better off sticking with Google AdSense or Yahoo Publisher Network in my opinion. When I tried it with one of my other sites years ago, it never worked out as I received one tiny sale. Yet I was able to bring in more revenue on the same placements with “traditional” ad networks so I gave up.
In fact, What’s really funny to me is that the “featured sites” haven’t changed in over a year – there is a very small rotation of them including: Ebaums World, Tickle, Putfile and Friendster. If AdBrite really wanted to build a community, they would rotate those a lot more and show off some of the smaller sites. Of course the smaller sites make nothing for AdBrite so I understand why they show the big ones all the time. If they pimped the small sites within AdBrite, perhaps they could move them to less-small and then to larger which could only help AdBrite.
They also miss the current thought that “social” online advertising is not just about “pageviews” anymore. It’s about buying a presence on sites that you want to be affiliated with no matter the traffic. AdBrite began when pageviews alone were the way advertisers selected sites.
And as I noted in my previous post about AdBrite, when I tried advertising with them about a year ago, I found the process difficult. They emailed me to say it’s upgraded now but I haven’t tried it since then.
I am not sure what the new funding round will be used for but my suggestion would be to focus on creating forward-thinking online advertising models. Shouldn’t an ad network be self-sustaining for the most part (except perhaps in major expansion periods)?
When AdBrite first began operations, I was very excited to use the service and thought it had great potential. As it seems the CEO has great influence in the community, perhaps it can get back to building that potential in the near future. I might even be interested in testing it out again in the future.
AdBrite has launched another option within their advertising network — the full page ad. These ads run on many of the major news sites such as New York Times (not served by AdBrite). Kristen has some additional information on the launch.
From the release, "Over the past century, full-page print ads have played a central role in building the world’s greatest brands," said Ignacio Fanlo, CEO of AdBrite. "Now, AdBrite is reinventing the format for online media with full sound, motion and interactivity – plus the ability to measure exactly how long each viewer is engaged with your message." Launch advertisers include such well-known brands as Sanyo, Pennzoil and Live Nation.
The publisher page doesn’t provide details if the purchasing process is the same as with other Adbrite units – that is traffic-based or if it’s category-based. If their ad-sales team can sell these slots, they could prove to be profitable for many Web sites and blogs. I haven’t seen full-page ads on blogs yet so naturally it will be interesting to see the community reaction once they start to hit the bigger blogs.
I was an Adbrite user about 18 mos ago, but gave up because I found their ordering process and their publisher process to be difficult and cumbersome – no idea if they have sorted out those issues.
I am also looking forward to the launch of the Adbrite "Spottt" link exchange program they announced at Techcrunch 40. Cute dog!