Advertising any product to me is becoming more and more difficult. It is not just me, there is a growing number of people who are discovering ways to skip ads almost completely in their daily lives.
In my own case, I honestly can’t remember the last time I bought a newspaper but it would be years ago. I prefer to get all my news online.
I use the Firefox plugin Adblock to ensure I don’t see most ads online (see below)
This is the ENN site viewed without the Adblock plugin
This is the same ENN site viewed using the Adblock plugin
I used to listen to quite a bit of radio when I was on the road. Now however, I fill my iPod with podcasts before setting off on any journey and listen to those instead. This means that I am listening to content of my selection, relevant to my work, and I am not at the whim of whatever presenter happens to be on the radio.
I watch a decreasing amount of television. The TV I do watch tends to be DVDs or movie channels with no ads. I’d potentially watch a little more TV if I had Sky+ (similar to Tivo) but it is waaaaaaay too expensive.
And yes, before anyone says it, I do see the irony of posting this on a site who’s hosting is being paid for by Google ads!
So if you were an advertiser, trying to get your brand/message through to me (and people like me), how would you go about it?
Dave wrote a thought-provoking post on online advertising and blogs following on from mine and Damien’s posts on the topic.
Dave’s idea is not to display ads to regular visitors to your site:
What Iâ€™d do personally is to have a cookie on my site so that repeat visitors didnâ€™t get ads.
People who click on my ads stumble into here from Google so itâ€™d be great if they were the only people who got the Ads.
Personally, I feel that the people who read my blog more often, consume more of my resources, so they should be the ones presented with the opportunity to thank me by clicking on an ad once in a while!
Go ahead, thank me, you know you want to! 😉
Edited to add a 😉 so as not to violate the Google TOS – thanks Dave
As you may have noticed, I have started adding Google Ads to the posts on this blog, as well as to the blog itself.
I took a look at the site stats, and decided which of the old posts receive the most traffic and I have added Google ads to these posts.
Again, like the ads just under the header image, these ads are, I think unintrusive and will hopefully help me become the dot blog millionaire I have always aspired to be!
I am adding the ads to individual posts using the fantastic WordPress plug-in, Adsense Delux which Michele recommended to me last night. Adsense delux allows me to individually format ads to suit posts so ads can look completely different from one post to the next.
For the moment, I am going to stay with the understated ads and I will monitor the click through rate they provide me. As a matter of interest, I don’t have a baseline to work from – what kind of Click Through Rate (CTR) should I expect to get?
I have finally added Google Ads to this site. Why? Well, when I hear that Jason Calacanis just sold his company for $25-$35m on Google Ad revenues of $1m annually, I decided I need to try doing something similar! So I figure, if I can get $100,000 Google Ad revenue, I’ll be able to sell for $2.5m – Wohooo! I’m gonna be rich, rich I tell ya!
No seriously, I have added the ads to the site to offset some of the hosting costs. The ads themselves I have tried to keep subtle using a 468 x 60 text only banner and I’m keeping the text colour the same as the colour of the posts. This I am doing in order that the ads don’t distract from the posts. However, there is always the view that by doing this, no-one will ever click on the ads because they are too subtle!
Obviously, if you read this site in your rss reader – this is a moot point! Still, I’d like people’s opinions on this, is it better (from an earnings point of view) to have the ads loud, garish and in the readers face (say it ain’t so), or is the muted approach more likely to succeed?