DoubleClick, the New York-based online advertising juggernaut Google bought for $3.1 billion in 2007, is quite sanguine about Ad Exchange, its year-old online ad marketplace that solicits real-time bids from buyers, according to a report by paidContent.
Neal Mohan, Google’s VP of product management, in an interview with paidContent, said that the AdEx tripled the number of transactions since last year. He claimed that as a result, AdEx publishers can expect to generate, on average, 188 percent more revenue compared to other bidding systems.
That’s a big advantage! Mr. Mohan told paidContent that Ad Exchange allows Google to log a great deal of data about online ad buys, allowing it to supplement the traditional ad-rate measurement of eCPM with additional pricing information. Additionally, Google is developing new ways for publishers to customize there advertisement offerings:
Among the latest tools added to the DoubleClick Ad Exchange are Private Ad Slots, which are customizable, invitation-only auctions that allow publishers to make certain ad spaces available only to select advertisers. They’ll be able to assign variable pricing floors depending on the buyer. “Publishers have been responding to this system because we’ve promised them more controls,” Mohan said. “We’ll continue working on that this year as well.”
On hearing this, we can’t help but harken back to Nick Denton’s “beyond the blog” memo from last year:
Media buyers may know many of their measures of performance are misleading; the savvier ones know clickthroughs are an indicator of the blindness, senility or idiocy of readers rather than the effectiveness of the ads.
By bringing in sponsors for scheduled programming, as described above, we can create several exclusive advertising opportunities rather than just one a day. And the client, with both the prominence of front-page placement and predictable traffic to that page, can also be confident that their campaign will run against appropriate content: a cable show trailer with the weekly entertainment guide, for instance; or Visa’s new credit card next to personal finance content.
It looks like the online advertising space is slowly moving to transcend some of the traditional hallmarks that were holding back the online publishing business. With a little luck, site operators may even be able to offer targeted, smart displays with customizable content that reflects their existing brand, rather than adapt it to ad buyers’ needs.
mtaylor [at] observer.com | @mbrookstaylor
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