Tag Archives: ads

Are Ads Really That Bad?

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During live calls the other night, one person brought up the topic of online ads. This usually tends to spark a debate. Some people, like me, don’t mind ads. They help pay the bills for many sites. However, some of you out there become almost violent any time you see an ad on a page.

If Twitter ever became ad-supported, a lot of people will be angry. The caller was surprised that Google hasn’t influenced them into doing it. Just like when Facebook incorporated ads onto their site, people will gripe. However, they won’t leave in droves. Ads are a fact of life, whether it is in print, online, on the radio or on television. Hell, there are ads at the movie theater!

The ad economy only works when everyone wins. For instance, when I negotiate a coupon for the community, all of us win. The vendor may receive sales. You will save money. I may get a little bit of referral money or credit. That’s a complete win situation, no matter how you look at it.

There has to be a good balance between the advertiser and the people who are being advertised to.

Which side of the fence are you on?

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Web Site Advertising Options

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This caller is wanting to set up his own web site and make money with it. He has a lot of questions as to how you get paid from advertisers, and how the process works in general. There’s a lot more involved than simply buying a domain name and slapping AdSense on it, trust me.

He’s thinking of making a web site with different types of art and wallpapers. He’s an artist, and wallpapers are in great demand if they’re unique and of good quality.

The first thing you have to do is think of all the ways you can drive attention to your site. Facebook, Twitter and YouTube accounts are very worthwhile. You have to engage your community and keep them interested in what you’re doing before you can begin to make money. Without anyone to visit, ads won’t do you a lick of good.

On a web site, there are multiple ways of generating money. There are the traditional means such as with AdSense or Kontera links. You could also potentially land a sponsor who will pay you a set amount of money per month or quarter. That, however, tends to tie directly in with your website traffic.

As I already said, driving traffic to yourself is the key behind any form of advertising. Your best bet is to start the website and then get out there and network your rear end off. Visit other blogs with similar themes and leave comments – along with a link back to your own site. Don’t write something insipid or spammy. Leave a thoughtful message, one that may promote further discussion. People will naturally want to check out what else you have to say!

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I recently attended the WTIA Fast Pitch Forum & Technology Showcase. The conference featured two dozen of the of the hottest technology companies in Washington presenting their business in a competition for “Best In Show”. WidgetBucks was one of the presenters. WidgetBucks is a vertical shopping ad network that helps publishers and bloggers optimize their earnings.

WidgetBucks features pay-per-click shopping widgets that help their customers make money fast. They instantly display the most popular products based on buying trends of 100 million shoppers. Thus they are highly engaging, which means instant dollars for the customers!

If you own a website and are tired of trying to figure out what the best advertising method is for you… look no further. The program offered by WidgetBucks is simple to use, and is going to make you money fast.

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How to Improve the Readability of a Web Page for Free

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Boomarklets are awesome. I remember the first time I saw them – I was amazed! You find them on web pages, and you press the button linked to them. They’ll do a variety of things, depending on what they were designed to do. I used to use Internet Explorer, and have now switched to Safari. So, some of the bookmarklets I’ve made over the years no longer work. Certain bookmarklets will only work in certain browsers. The reason I’m bringing this up is that one: they’re actually just awesome. And two, you should always install them when you can, since they do a variety of great things. One I’ve recently found will help improve the readability of web pages.

The Readability Experiment by the folks at the arc90 lab is a browser bookmarklet. Reading anything on the Internet has become a full-on nightmare. As media outlets attempt to eke out as much advertising revenue as possible, we’re left trying to put blinders on to mask away all the insanity that surrounds the content we’re trying to read.

First you configure it: choose your style, including text size and page margin size. Make it look the way you would like, so that you’re more tempted to read it. If you’re on any web page that is annoying you because it wasn’t designed well, you can use it to ‘clean up’ the page. It will remove the unnecessary things you don’t want to see. I went to a post in my blog and clicked the Readability bookmarklet. It removed the video, the comments, and even the ads. It removed everything other than the actual content.

Readability is a very cool project. You can use it anywhere. My recommendation is to use it on MySpace, since they aren’t the best-designed pages on the planet. If you want to read any page easier without fighting through nonsense, install Readability.

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Windows Vista TV Commercials


I’m sorry. I’m watching Comedy Central right now, with Windows Vista (apparently) sponsoring the hour of standup (even though Scrubs was scheduled to air). Instead of the regular din of commercials, the network is running nonsensical clips of some “old guy” teasing people to TheIAP.org – where you’re pointed to an even more confusing teaser link (Clearification.com). The “old guy” keeps talking about making life “clutter free” but I’ve never, ever, in my entire life felt more confused about what a commercial was trying to communicate to me. I understand the unspoken meaning behind “that not-so-fresh feeling” a woman has, but I’ll be damned if I can make heads or tails of this Windows Vista campaign.

Dude. Seriously. No. This isn’t happening. Don’t take these links as validation – I’m merely baffled at what a horrible waste of resources this was. Microsoft: you had a TREMENDOUS opportunity to blow people away with what you put in Windows Vista. Instead, you send them to Web sites that don’t make any sense (though Clearification.com sports an RSS feed that will likely die in a month).

My god, even the “PC” in Apple’s Get a Mac commercials does a better job at representing what your product does.

Wow. Seriously. Wow.