The web is a wonderful wonderful place. But, as we all know, good god it’s crowded and cluttered. Which is where strong brands come in. I’ve long berated the obsession with blatant short termism from any sector – but not least from web publishers who have a knack for panicking about all the cheap knock-off's taking traffic away from them. If you play the long game and stay true to quality and being true to your visitors / readers then the more rubbish that the web hosts, the more people will look for "beacon destinations" (not sure if I've just made that up - but probably not as I think it's quite catchy) . Publishers get caught into thinking they want volume volume volume, not caring whether it’s transient or not. But where the real value comes in any open market is in establishing a brand that resonates with a target audience and breeds loyalty.
Everything about the “standard” income/advertising model we see played out across the internet perpetuates this – ads being sold on the number of views (CPM) or volume of click throughs, and as many slots on a page as you can fit with often scant regard for the user experience. Is it any wonder that we all become "banner blind" (which is of course highly counter productive for the volume merchants anyway)?
What’s most ridiculous is that for however many pre-web decades advertising space has been bought and sold, it was always done on the basis it was largely about “influencing” target audience through brand recognition and/or product recall. Along comes the internet and all of a sudden those considerations are forgotten altogether because you can track a view or a click - an immediate interaction with your advertising message. That’s just nonsense. One proven methodology (and it is proven over hundreds of years) for increasing sales through promoting your product/service in a more gradual influencing manner does not become worthless just because there's a medium with a way to measure a more instant reaction to your messaging.
So with that all said you’ll hopefully see why the following article really resonated with me – not least the “cost per influence” part. Is this where the balance starts to return to the market and exposure to a clear message is valued in at least similar ways, irrespective of the medium? I hope so.
The Ad Network of Creative, Web and Design Culture
The premier network for reaching creative, web and design professionals, The Deck serves up tens of millions of page views each month and is uniquely configured to connect the right marketers to a targeted, influential audience.
We’re picky about the advertising we’ll accept. We won’t take an ad unless we have paid for and/or used the product or service. Sell us something relevant to our audience and we’ll sell you an ad.
One Impression at a Time
With the exception of “roadblocks,” which we’ll discuss later, there are only thirty advertising slots available each month for the entire Deck. Only a single ad will be shown for each page viewed.
In essence, buying a month on The Deck gives you an exclusive showing on 3.3 percent of all the pages viewed for that month across all forty-six sites and services. And there won’t be Google or other third-party ads diluting your exposure. The Deck ad is the only ad on the page.
A buy in The Deck reaches the creative community on the web in an uncluttered, controlled environment, far more valuable than a standard banner or a single text ad among dozens of others. Current Deck ads are also listed on this page and displayed here.
Cost Per Influence
We’re not selling The Deck based on page views or hits or click-through, but if we were, the CPM for a buy here would be priced well below industry norms. Most media who say “we don’t sell on the numbers” do so because they don’t have the numbers to support their rates. That’s certainly not the case with The Deck, as a group the network serves up tens of millions of impressions each month. All that being said, it’s not about “cost-per-thousand,” it’s about “cost-per-influence.”
The loyal, regular readers of the forty-six sites and services consist of web publishers, writers, developers, editors, reporters and bloggers as well as influential designers and art directors. Plus, the aggregate audience is made up of writers, photographers, illustrators, students, filmmakers, typographers, artists, animators, musicians, coders, designers and many other creative professionals.
In the Details
The thirty ads each month are in rotation across all forty-six sites and services. The ads are 120 pixels wide by 90 pixels tall and also allow for up to 80 characters of text to accompany the image which allows advertisers to make their ads a bit more graphic, so to speak.
Pricing and Roadblocks
The current rate for ads is $7900 USD per ad per month and this rate is valid through June 30, 2010. Additionally, marketers who desire 100% of the page views on the network for a given day or days may be able to purchase a “roadblock” for $7900 USD per day. Roadblocks are ideal for product or service launches and other time sensitive communications like movie openings and conferences.