Saturday, March 10, 2007

The new opportunity

It's official... We've changed positions and are focusing on the advertising market; particularly the non-traditional advertising market that isn't well covered online. There are a few reasons for this change;
  1. There really isn't a simple solution for people seeking ads in non-traditional media
  2. The buyer-driven market is much better for advertising, as it allows for more automation
  3. The advertising industry is huge; a lot of people don't even know where to begin or how to deal with ad-sales reps
The concept is still pretty simple. The idea is to make advertising more direct, and easier for both the distributor and the advertiser. Rather than advertisers trying to hunt down a sales representative and comparative pricing, they simply tag their information. The distributors can then easily see prospective buyers and create an offer specifically for them.

This works really well with both local media and national media. If you're a local business, narrow your information down locally, and local distributors will be able to find you.

Automation is another important aspect. An advertisers selects their tags, sets their price, and uploads their media. Depending on the tags selected, distributors can automatically have offers and counter-offers setup... Once the advertiser selects a listing, their media is automatically pushed to the distributor.

Hopefully we can save non-traditional advertising.

2 comments:

Rod Dahl said...

Robert, ever considered going the reverse advertising route instead of going offline? Ok, let me explain:

I have no idea if you're familiar with sell-side advertising, but here's the short version: it's a model where the publisher gets to decide which ads are going to show up at his website, as opposed to the advertiser in the classical model. Take a look at wordofblog.org to see what I'm talking about.

It's a neat way of thinking about advertising, and no company that I know of (besides WoB, which is non-profit) has tappet into this market yet.

Every publisher wants to post to his website the most effective ads that he can find (in order to maximize profits), and so does every advertiser. Algorithms (aka Adsense) are never going to replace humans for this kind of job.

Anyway, WoB is still very primitive (mainly because the owner is focused on his job at Oracle; WoB is a unambitious side project), and would need a lot of tweaks to be monetized. I guess that if he streamlined ad creation with an online tool, re-designed the website with a better UI (like widgetbox.com), better metrics and tracking and maybe a way to connect advertisers with ad designers then, IMO it could really fly.

Anyways, I'm thinking about working on something along these lines, and I would be glad to hear you opinion. Drop me a line at rlanderdahl AT gmail.

Rod Dahl

Robert said...

Hey Rod,

WoB is pretty similar; as you said though, there really needs to be a monetization strategy (particularly for the publishers). That's where Wantsy can be different.

Lets say you're an advertiser. You would come to Wantsy and browse through the various categories and see if a publisher has ad space (and at a price you like). If you can't find what you're looking for, you fire off a "broadcast bid" to all publishers within the category. The hope is that 1) you will meet a publisher's minimum reserve bid, or 2) a publisher will budge and sell you the inventory.

If you're a publisher, you would come to the service and take a look through the broadcast bids (what advertisers are seeking). If you're willing to fulfill an advertiser's needs, you create an offer for them. If there isn't any demand for your inventory yet, or you'd like to go a step further, you can upload your inventory and allow the system to try and auto-match.

The good news is, this system works across more mediums than just the web; although, it's equally beneficial to all (including the web).