New ad models for indie content?


After a comprehensive analysis of the state of display advertising (worth a read in itself), John Battelle is agitiating for a new advertising model for individual bits of content can be monetised, which…

…attaches value to an individual piece of content, such that the piece of content is monetized as it travels around the web, getting reposted, tweeted, shared on Facebook, pinned on Pinterest, and so forth. Such a model is incredibly difficult to create, but not impossible. I promised a follow up post.

Neil Perkin likes the idea because…

…it takes a distributed and destination approach to display. Most traditional forms of display advertising on content sites are based on classic destination thinking – the content producer can only make money as long as their audience are on their property (website, mobile site, app) viewing the ads.

The value of an individual piece of content is interesting, but – subject to John’s promised follow up post – I have a few reservations about how possible it would be to monetise that with ads in a way that would support independent content producers:

  • Revenue would accrue to hits, blockbuster videos, images or posts that spread on a massive scale.
  • The business model for many independents is already around ancillary services – commissions, consultancy and speaker fees etc.
  • The answer may not lie in advertising at all… I wonder if a different version of the metered media model would be the answer.

That said, it would be fantastic to see business models that emerge that support small content producers. Let’s see what Mr Battelle comes up with…

2 responses to “New ad models for indie content?”

  1. Yes, agreed that the answer isn’t always advertising. Good to see an interesting idea around digital display though – not enough thinking gone into changing a legacy model that has been essentially unchanged since it began almost two decades ago. Interesting to see what his follow on thoughts are

  2. Yep – really looking forward to that follow up post. Cheers, Neil. 

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