It’s interesting that on the Blog Network Ratings List, Federated Media @ #2 is now ahead of WeblogsInc @ #3. With Gawker @ #1. But on a totally different point, thats related, I totally agree with Jason Calacanis on this one, having spent a decade on big brand advertisers and their media buying habits. (regionally anyway The Calacanis quote (which got me thinking about this) was when asked about (if someone was to) set up a new blog ad network, which I’m sure is the last thing on his mind, what should they do : “Reach is what the big boys and girls sell- folks like MSN, Yahoo, and AOL. Niche, startup publisher can’t sell reach--they can sell reach within a vertical MAYBE. For example, we can say that we have 10% of the 20M car enthusists out there, or something like that.“
I’m particularly interested in the rise of blog/podcast ad networks without ownership and/or exclusivity over content or advertising. For example Federated Media, ala John Battelle, who seem to be the loudest, “premium” for profit blog, funded, 2.0 blog ad network. Federated Media with their retro, hipster post-Denton logo represent “clusters” of sites like Jeff Jarvis’ buzzmachine. Buzzmachine today on the far right column, has a federated media skyscraper top position, and a google skypscraper bottom right. Now Jeff may get a higher yield from having 2 ad spots (it doesnt always equate btw esp when u remove the price premium on the higher ad and factor in much lower clickthrus or to quote the Topix.net blog from today ” If we can make a UI change (e.g. shrinking ad unit slightly, moving the position, changing the color) which yields a lower ad CTR but keeps the eCPM at the same level, does that mean we increased the user utility of the site?”) So rightly this benefits Jeff and it’s his blog and his choice. I’m not sure how this benefits the Federated Media pitch though, which is all about “reduced clutter”, “fit the environment” and so on. In effect their reach needs a new classification, as do all the blog and podcast networks. In many cases it’s non-exclusive.