Wednesday, July 2, 2008

DIY Advertising Takes Off

When I wrote about AdReady several weeks ago I set up an account to keep an eye on this interesting self-service display advertising concept. We’ve gotten used to this process with Google AdWords, and AdReady has services like a library of standard ads that make DIY banner advertising a reality. Following the model of AdWords, you can set your own advertising budget and monitor campaign results.
Because the system is easy to use, it’s easy to test competing ad messages. In their June newsletter, AdReady gave an example of running a test on an advertising button of its own. It’s a nice, clean test, with the only change being the call to action. I’d have guessed that “Click Here Now” was a fairly weak call to action, but personally, I’d have thought “Build it Now” would outperform “Get Started.” That’s why marketers should run tests! If you’d like a direct-response testing primer, please read the free testing chapter from Paul Berger’s and my direct marketing text. There is additional testing material in my Internet marketing text; I’ll do a post on that soon, because it’s an important tool.

So—with AdReady you can create your own ads and test versions. Now you can do it on the New York Times site. It seems like a no-brainer. Small advertisers are not worth the time of the advertising department, but, in the aggregate, they could provide another significant revenue stream. Why not give them self-service capabilities? Using the AdReady platform, that’s just what the NYT has done.

For publisher sites that need to add revenue streams—and who doesn’t—this is an interesting option. For sites that are free to the user, like AdReady and so many others, it has something interesting to say about monetizing the site.

That leads me directly to what I’m planning to write about tomorrow. Please stay tuned!

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