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Burst Media Archive
Online video search/ads provider Blinkx has announced the acquisition of ad network Burst Media today. The deal will be made up of stock and cash with a total value of $30 million. Congrats to the Burst team who have been cranking online ads since the earliest days of the banner ad.
Ryan Lawler at GigaOm notes, “Blinkx will pay $4.5 million in cash as part of the deal, with the remainder being paid through the issuance of new shares of stock…In exchange, Blinkx expects Burst Media revenues of around $33-$34 million.”
This is an interesting acquisition for me as I was one of the first publishers with Burst Media way back before there was a YouTube, Facebook, or Twitter. It’s been interesting to watch Burst change (or not) over the last decade. I’ve often said that they didn’t move fast enough as ad creatives changed.
The main reason I’ve stayed with Burst over the last few years is because of their member forum. The community on the forum is great and provides a very diverse view of online advertising across a wide variety of industries and niches. I sure hope that Blinkx doesn’t shut the forum down after the acquisition is complete.
Boston-based online advertising firm Burst Media has announced the acquisition of NY-based Giant Realm today. Giant Realm describes their service as, “an online media company that targets the tough to reach male 18-34 year old demographic by delivering original, high-quality content from respected voices in the hottest areas of entertainment – including gaming, film, television, humor, music and gadgets”. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.
I’ve used Burst Media in some capacity since the mid-90s. Today I only use them to serve some ads on InsideTransit as the other networks in my chain have performed better in both CPM and fill rate. Last year Burst Media announced several niche ad networks including a niche online gamers ad network. I assume the acquisition of Giant Realm will help to strengthen the Burst ad networks.
Giant Realm raised just over $5 million since early 2008. The company is based in midtown although no information was provided as to whether they will move in with Burst either in NYC or in Mass.
Last month Kara Swisher provided a list of companies she thought might be acquired soon and Giant Realm was one of the names on her list.
Related: check out all of our Burst Media coverage.
The chart below shows the various request for proposals (RFP) that ad network Burst Media has received in 2008. Rich media campaigns are the most requested followed by behavioral and custom content integration. It will be interesting to see what this chart looks like in 2009. I would guess video (currently at 30%) will move up to at least 2nd behind rich media.
Burst Media includes the follow creative types in the rich media category: expandable units, floating units and polite ads.
Burst Media continues their YAAN (yet another ad network) rollout today with the launch of the niche online gamers vertical ad network. This follows the trendsetters ad network, moms ad network, food ad network, early adopters ad network, and the family travelers ad network. Does there come a point when there are so many ad networks that it spreads the company so thin and makes it difficult to sell across all of these new networks?
Burst describes today’s new ad network, "The Burst Gamers Network’s young, predominantly male, audience is technologically savvy, passionate about digital and video games and has an appetite for a host of products and services — ranging from electronic gadgets and entertainment to snack foods and the hottest sneaker styles." They will be hand selecting sites to become part of the network.
Burst also notes that they will offer new creative formats including: widgets, video cubes, storytelling modules, and mobile display ads. I’ve never seen any campaigns in these formats in 12 years with the company. If they are able to sell more 2008-ish formats, that’s a good thing.
We are part of the early adopters ad network but so far no campaigns have come our way. I’ve moved most of our inventory to Tribal Fusion as they seem to be the best of the remnant compaign providers. I want Burst to succeed – I almost feel like after being with them for 10+ years that I have a vested interest (yet of cours no financial interest). As I’ve written so many times before, Burst is still stuck in 1998. Sometimes you have to realize that it’s time for a new playbook, the old one won’t work no matter how you turn it.
Burst Media continues their YAAN (yet another ad network) rollout today with the launch of the Trendsetters vertical ad network. This follows the moms ad network, food ad network, early adopters ad network, and the family travelers ad network. Does there come a point when there are so many ad networks that it spreads the company so thin and makes it difficult to sell across all of these new networks?
Burst describes today’s new ad network, "Advertisers can use the Burst Trendsetters Network to target influencers of new trends, many of whom use the Internet as their primary information source to research brands, and who very often act as brand advocates to their peers." The Burst Trendsetters Network includes users ages 15-34 and includes 100 websites that reach 7 million unique visitors and delivers more than 51 million web impressions.
We are part of the early adopters ad network but so far no campaigns have come our way. I’ve moved most of our inventory to Tribal Fusion as they seem to be the best of the remnant compaign providers. I want Burst to succeed – I almost feel like after being with them for 10 years that I have a vested interest (yet of cours no financial interest). As I’ve written so many times before, Burst is still stuck in 1998.
Boston-based online advertising rep Burst Media has announced the launch of a new ad network based on "Family Travelers". This is not an April Fools joke. Here is how Burst describes this new ad network, "Sites within the Burst Family Travelers Network cover a range of topics, including: destination information, travel tips, guides and travelogues. Sites in the Network also contain content on the types of vacations families take – for family togetherness, outdoor recreation, resort travel or educational trips."
This news comes after the 2008 launches of the Burst Food ad network, Moms ad network, and the Early Adopter ad network. We are a member of the Early Adopter network but so far haven’t seen any targeted campaigns. I have heard similar chatter in the other networks.
I’ve tried to help Burst – spent hours on the phone with their execs (for free) and offered them help to get the ship moving forward. These networks will get Burst a pinch of PR but not much else. The issue is that these ad networks are still serving mostly 1990s ads. It’s time for Burst to innovate in the space – though I have been wishing for this since the old days.
Burst Media has launched yet another ad network this month — this time it’s Early Adopters. Two hundred sites are in the network and CN is included (we’ve been with Burst since their launch in the mid-90s) and it looks like some of Federated Media’s sites are in the mix as well, namely MobileCrunch, TechCrunch, Boing Boing, and UberGizmo. I am just making a guess that the sites are joining the network as part of Federated, they might be doing it outside. We’ve heard Techcrunch Editor Arrington say he wants out of Federated, perhaps this is a way out (though I seriously doubt it).
comScore reports that the network serves 23 million unique visitors a month and Burst notes that the content areas include, "content ranging from gadget reviews and tech talk to music and video games". Last month Burst Media launched the Moms Ad Network and a Food Ad Network.
Will these vertical ad networks help Burst become a leader again? Sadly I say no. I want to see Burst reinvent themselves and kick butt in the space but these ad networks are just little patches on a hole thats too large for patch work. It’s time to chop down the rest of the wall and build a new one. I will have more thoughts on this in the next week about how Burst (and many of the other Web 1.0 ad networks) can reinvent themselves. They are seriously starting to run a fine line between growth and death – and if they aren’t willing to look past the banner ad, one can only imagine what side of the line they will (sadly) be on soon.
For those interested, here are the demographics for the Early Adopter network: