WebRef Update: Featured Article: Banners are Blunted - Other Options for Buyers and Sellers
Banners are Blunted - Other Options for Buyers and Sellers
We all know it. The only banners that are clicked on these days are those that are either incredibly creative, target newbies or offer some kind of giveaway, be it one million dollars or 20 "banana bucks." It's the truth. The net-savvy population has learned to skim lightly over the banner ads and get to the guts of a page, the content. As the Internet public evolves, so must Internet advertising. Fortunately, there are some highly valid alternatives which can greatly increase click-throughs and create a better deal for both the advertiser and the site owner.
Ezine advertising is the most common alternative to "traditional" advertising methods. Usually, a 5-10 line plug will be situated towards the top of a content filled Ezine. These usually have quite a high CPM. Advertisers will not even look at an Ezine with a subscription base of lower than 1000 readers. To effectively promote the ad, a statement of support from the publisher is also helpful. For an example, see the endorsement that Sitepoint.com includes in its newsletter: www.sitepoint.com/newsletter/sample.php3
The most effective Ezine ads are those which are not easily distinguishable as advertisements that break up the text of a feature article. There has to be a place where you draw the line, however. Don't attempt to fool your readers into thinking that an advertisement is your editorial content, and don't let your content be prejudiced by advertiser affiliations in any way. Your readers will see through it, unsubscribe and never come back.
In recent times, some sites on the Internet have taken a leaf out of commercial television's book and adopted similar forms of advertising "between" pages. It involves a 5-10 second Shockwave Flash, Real Media or even a plain ol' gif image, which appears in between a link from, say, the site's homepage to an article, streaming media feed or other piece of content. Prices for this are usually relatively expensive compared to more conventional forms of advertising, but these ads are usually quite effective. This advertising form is not currently very widespread, due largely to the fact that the technologies used to present them requires additional download time as well as a very fast modem for it to be effective. In the future, however, this may well be the way to go for many Web sites seeking an advertising alternative.
Revised: August 11, 2000