Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Blog and advertisement

Blogs-The New Advertising Avenue

Imagine a situation wherein you get a medium that allows you to vent out your opinions on the latest happenings or views on some emerging concepts or even review new products and technologies. Wouldn't it be a boon for people to be able to express themselves with-out any pressures?

Well, with the arrival of blogs, freedom of expression has achieved a new form. It's true about any new breakthrough that we witness. Once it becomes popular, an attempt to bring the element of commerce is inevitable and often hurried. Now, blogs can also be used as an avenue for advertising. There are three ways in which advertising works with blogs-sponsor-ships. advertising or affiliates.

Sponsorships: If a blog is about cricket, manufacturers of cricket goods can sponsor the blog. This way, their products get space and the blog gets money as well. Moreover, this is contextual and not about advertising about shampoos to someone who is bald. The integration helps.



Advertising: Content-specific advertising can be brought about through tools like Google's AdSense and BlogAds, a blog-specific product. The readers won't find this out of context and chances are high that they'd look forward to the advertisements, especially since they are reading something that interests them. This is a pull effect and is more effective.

Affiliates: Partnerships and alliances with book publishers also make a lot of sense- If a reader is going through a blog on art. it makes sense to show interesting and recent books on art on the blog. For example, http://www.drawn.ca/ is a blog devoted to illustrations, art, cartooning and drawing. Its purpose is to inspire creativity by sharing links and resources.
In essence, it brings art lovers from all over the world together and provides them with interesting, useful information on their common interest.

That blogs are going to make it big, as an advertising platform. According to a report by PQ Media, blog, podcast and RSS advertising are the fastest growing segments of the alternative media industry, as combined spending on advertising through these three platforms surged 198.4 percent to $20.4 million in 2005. Aggregate spending on the three alternative media segments is projected to grow another 144.9 percent to $49.8 million in 2006, the report has found. Blogs are useful for companies as they can get key insights from netizens on the products that they manufacture. Suggestions for improvements or better versions can sometimes come from the netizens and not the in-house product development department. Companies like HP and Sun Microsystems use blogs to interact with employees and like-minded interest groups.

The technological advances in this age of media-fragmentation have translated into emergence of some new media and the media planners better take note of these. The Internet users are rising and broadband rates are declining. The future will be brighter for online media. Blogs will also be looked upon as a reliable advertising avenue. As a particular blog starts becoming popular, advertisers are bound to make a beeline and invest in it. It is indeed interesting that netizens' voice is all set to also become a nice advertising avenue. •

(courtesy - Pitch, June-15 - July15)

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