February 7th, 2008

AdCamo Monetizes Web Page Backgrounds

By Adam Ostrow
Mashable

AdCamo is a new ad network that monetizes the backgrounds of Web pages. Itís not an entirely new advertising format Ė youíve probably seen these types of ads on top trafficked sites like MySpace Ė but itís the first ad network we know of that will let smaller publishers monetize their sites with this type of advertising.

Background ads arenít clickable Ė theyíre much more about branding. On MySpace, Iíve seen ads mostly for movie releases and TV shows, where the call to action isnít web-based. Thus, this ad format has typically been reserved for big brands with big budgets, and most of the spend has gone to big web sites. AdCamo wants to change this by bringing the format to a network where advertisers can make buys across multiple small-to-mid sized sites.

That said, the ad format could be considered fairly intrusive and probably isnít going to win many fans in the aesthetically-conscious crowd. Beyond that, Rafe Needleman of Webware is concerned that the format could actually confuse users, writing, ďThese background ads can really junk up a Web page and can confuse the reader about which parts of the site are content and which are advertiser-provided.Ē

Personally, as a web publisher, Iím all for new ways to monetize content that Iím giving away for free. Thereís always a balance between user-friendliness and commercialism, but the bottom line is that if youíre trying to make a living producing content online, you need ways to make money. AdCamo adds to the monetization mix, and assuming publishers have some control over what ads show on their site, can probably strike a balance between usability and commercialism. 

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