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Why In-Image Advertising is Worth Looking Into

Posted September 25, 2012 by fran @ 10:27 am

The cliché “An image is worth a thousand words” should probably be revised to something like, “An image is worth a thousand bucks.” In this day and age, Images are not-so-slowly and surely ruling the web. Think about it. Image-based sites such as Pinterest are on the rise, popular photo-sharing app Instagram is literally worth a billion dollars, and social networks like Facebook, Google+, and most recently Twitter, are embracing the concept of cover or header images.

Now, the rising trend of images shouldn’t really come as a surprise. Aside from the fact that humans are generally very visual in nature, images have the power to communicate things and concepts that are difficult to put into words.

Moreover, images make content more attractive. Whether it’s a blog post, a report, or a white paper, pictures can enhance the overall look and feel of a document and they make content look easier on the eyes.

Yes, the value of images on the Internet is truly unquestionable. The question now is, how can you take advantage of this more image-based web?

Well, the answer to that depends on whether you’re an advertiser trying to reach more consumers or a publisher who wants to monetize their content. By using in-image advertising (also known as overlay ads), you will be able to use the power of pictures to forward your brand or make money out of your site.

Advertisers

If you’re an advertiser looking for effective ways to reach potential customers without annoying them, then you should really look into in-image advertisements. These types of ads appear on top of images and usually disappear when the customer hits the close button.

In-image ads can be very effective in getting visitor’s attention. Since people’s eyes usually fall on images first, placing your ads on top of pictures will garner more eyeballs and attention.

Choosing the right in-image services for you

It’s important to note though that not all in-image advertising solutions are created equal. Overlay ads will only be effective if they appear on top of relevant images and are displayed in the proper context. Be sure to speak with your ad network representative and ask them if they implement contextual and targeting technologies to ensure ad relevance. If they do not offer such solutions, it’s best to find another ad network that does.

Publishers

Trying to monetize your site’s traffic? Then be sure to look into in-image ads. These types of ads supplement your visitors’ browsing experience, and allow them to find relevant products and services. By displaying relevant ads on top of your site’s images, you’re not only adding value to your site, you’re opening up a solid revenue stream at the same time.

Choosing the right ad network for your site

You want an advertising partner that lets you customize your ads so that they’re appropriates with the look and feel of your site. Additionally, in order for your ads to actually generate clicks, they have to be relevant to your content. Choose an ad network that offers targeting and contextual technologies to ensure that your ads are related to the posts and images on your website.

It’s important to remember that your in-image ads will only be as good as the ad network that you sign up with. Before choosing an overlay ad solution, ask your ad network rep about the customization tools that they offer, their targeting solutions, and of course, how they pay their publishers. Doing so will allow you to offer great ads that earn you money and keep your visitors happy at the same time.

Image credit: Shermeee on Flickr

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5 Ways to Beat Shopping Cart Abandonment and Get More Sales

Posted September 19, 2012 by fran @ 9:55 am

If you have an e-commerce business then you know that getting people to your website is only half the battle. While SEO, affiliate sales, and, online advertising can definitely boost traffic to your site, the REAL challenge is in getting users to actually make a purchase.

If you’re experiencing high rates of shopping cart abandonment, then you should look into two things: your products and your website.

Let’s start with what you’re selling. Examine various aspects of your products—from quality, to price, to selection—and see if there’s anything that you can improve on. Ask customers for feedback or reviews and take note of any negative comments that you can address. You can also check out similar items in the industry to see if there’s anything that you can change about your products to make them more competitive.

If the problem isn’t your actual products, then perhaps you need to optimize your website to make it more customer-friendly. A few tweaks to your online store can significantly reduce shopping cart abandonment so look around your site for things that need improvement.

Not sure where to begin? Here are few tips to get you started.

1. Shorten your checkout process – Aim for a quick “in and out” process where customers visit your site, pick a product and hit buy. Often, people leave a site without buying anything because the checkout process just takes way too long. If customers need to answer questions or select various options for the product, then consider putting all these options into one form on a single page, rather than spreading them out.

Product suggestions can also prolong the checkout process and cause customers to leave. If you can, find other ways to cross-sell in order to not interrupt checkout.

2. Be transparent with all your charges – Hidden charges can also contribute to shopping cart abandonment. Nothing boots a customer out of site more quickly than surprise shipping or tax charges. Of course, while some of these fees are unavoidable, it’s best to be more transparent and upfront. Add a cost calculator so that you can allow customers to compute their costs beforehand, rather than surprising them with a huge charge in the end.

3. Offer “limited time” sales – Add in a sense of urgency by offering limited time sales. When customers see that your sales and promos will be expiring soon, they’ll be more motivated to complete a purchase. After all, who would want to miss out on a great deal?

4. Make your return policy clear – A vague return policy not only leads to shopping cart abandonment, it also reduces trust among customers, so ensure that it is as clear as possible. Some customers check a site’s return policies before making a purchase, so make it easy for them to ask questions and express concerns.

5. Use Retargeting / Remarketing Ads – When customers do leave your site without buying anything, don’t lose hope. Instead, make use of Remarketing (aka: Ad Retargeting) advertisements to reel users back in.

A Remarketing ad works by tagging a customer’s browser when they visit your site. When they leave without buying anything, the Remarketing technology will then display your ads on other websites that the user visits to gently remind them to go back to your store to complete a purchase.

Image credit: Polycart on Flickr

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AdMedia Goes Go Kart Racing

Posted September 5, 2012 by fran @ 7:00 am

Last Wednesday, the AdMedia team headed to the MB2 Raceway in Sylmar CA. We were all craving for an exciting trip, and this indoor go kart raceway was the perfect venue to fulfill our need for speed.

We were all up for some friendly competition, so we put on our helmets, got inside our vehicles and raced away! The fastest among us received medals, trophies, and most importantly, bragging rights. We even gave out awards to the “Best Crashers”!

The trip wasn’t just all about driving and crashing, though. When we weren’t on the track, we were hanging out in the VIP lounge eating pizza, playing video games, darts, and pool.

Yep, while other companies spent last Wednesday doing paperwork and whatnot, the people at AdMedia were… well, doing something else. Care to join us? If you’re up for it, visit our careers page and check out our latest job openings!

              

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Enhance Visitor Browsing Experience and Boost Revenue Using XML Feeds

Posted August 28, 2012 by fran @ 10:05 am

If you’re a publisher who wishes to add extra features to your blog, information website, or online store(while earning more money in the process), you should consider adding an XML Search Feed to your website. Now the term may look scary especially for beginners, but don’t worry; this won’t involve any sophisticated knowledge of code and you don’t have to learn any fancy skills to implement it.

Adding a Search XML Feed is as easy as copy pasting a code on to your website. What’s more, you’ll be able to customize the look and feel of the feed to ensure that it is in line with the design of your site.

Type of XML Feeds

XML Search Feeds let you provide users with results that are relevant to what they’re searching for. This helps users find useful websites, products, and services thus making your website more functional. Additionally, these feeds can actually boost your site’s potential by helping you rank in major search engines.

You can implement a number of XML Feeds depending on what your website is, and who your users are. For instance, a Local XML Search Data feed allows you to display local search results on your site. This way, when a user wants to buy say, a new phone, they can simply type their query in the search box and the feed will display places near their area where they can purchase a phone.

Displaying local results is extremely beneficial for users because it gives them links that are relevant to their location. There’s nothing worse than search results that are “all over the place”, so you’re actually saving users the time and effort when you’re giving them links that are close to home.

There’s also a Shopping XML Data feed that lets you provide product data from price comparison websites and search engines. Ideal for suggesting items and lower prices to users, this feed serves as a helpful companion for bargain shoppers.

This particular feed is very popular, especially in the present economy. More and more people are looking for ways to save, and users usually turn to the Internet to find deals and compare prices. Why not help them out by incorporating a budget friendly feed into your website? Aside from helping users save time, helping them save money is a great way to get in their good side and keep them coming back to your website.

Needless to say, for best results, implement XML Feeds that are related to the content of your website. There many types of feeds out there, so be sure to consult with your ad network representative to see which one will work best for you.

Earning Money

The great thing about Search XML Feeds is that on top of being extremely user-friendly and helpful, they can actually make you money. You’ll earn revenue whenever users click on the search results, so you’ll be able to put more money in your pocket, while enhancing the functionality of your website at the same time. Win-win.

 

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How to Get Around Users’ Ad Blind Spots

Posted August 21, 2012 by fran @ 12:08 pm

Low CTRs on banner ads could be due to ad blind spots. Some users are so used to seeing ads in the usual places (i.e. sidebars, top of the webpage) that they develop blind spots towards online ads, and their eyes just glaze over advertisements without really seeing them.

If your ad campaign is suffering from online ad blind spots, don’t fret. The following tips below should help you optimize your campaigns and help put your brand in front of customers.

Combine Clever Copy with Creative Designs – An effective way to get users to look up and notice your ads is to be witty while looking good at the same time. In the same way that a charismatic actor stands out because of his cleverness and good looks, your ads should have the combination of clever copy and stunning designs.

Do take note though that that wit and good looks won’t get you very far if you’re barking up the wrong tree. This is why it’s extremely important to use highly targeted ads to reel users in. If a person sees an advertisement that looks like it was made for him, then he’d find it very hard to ignore it.

Use Remarketing – Another great way to have banner ads work well for you is through the use of Remarketing. This ad type targets users that have previously visited your website without buying anything. Remarketing works by tagging that visitor’s computer and displaying ads on other websites that he visits. The person then sees the ad, and returns to your site to complete a purchase.

Take Advantage of Other Ad Formats – Speaking of Remarketing, if you really want to get in front of users, then you may want to utilize Cross Channel Remarketing. Unlike traditional Remarketing that only makes use of banner ads, Cross Channel Remarketing lets advertisers promote and remarket their products and services through various channels including email, display, social, mobile, and more.

Email – Cross Channel Remarketing lets advertisers utilize the power of email to get in front of users. Think of it as having an exclusive ticket to your customer’s inbox. What makes AdMedia’s Thank You Email offer stand out though is its use of high quality filters. These filters weed out accidental clicks and uninterested users to ensure that the only people that will see your ads are the ones who are truly interested in your products.

Video – Blind spots are virtually non-existent in the realm of video advertising. Considered as one of the most effective ways to literally get in front of customers, video ads are known to generate high levels of interest and engagement. Combine the power of video with Remarketing, and your customers will start returning to your site in no time.

Mobile – Why settle for just being in computer monitors? Put yourself right in the hands of your customers with the use of mobile ads. Mobile advertising allows you to target users according to their location, and is best used for reaching customers at a local level.

Image credit: nimishgogri on Flickr

 

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At AdMedia, We Work Hard, But We Play Hard, Too!

Posted August 14, 2012 by fran @ 10:10 am

We’ve all heard the saying about how all work and no play makes you a dull person. We here at AdMedia understand that completely, which is why while we work hard on our products and services, we also make it a point to include a whole lot of fun into our culture.

Check out the photos and tidbits below and get a glimpse of all the fun activities that we’ve had in the last couple of months:

February 2012 – Skiing and Snowboarding at Mountain High Ski Resort.

      

We hit the slopes at the Mountain High Ski Resort last February. Some of us skied; some of us decided to snowboard, and some of us fell on our butts.  But that’s okay, because ALL of us had fun. When we weren’t out in the snow, we were indoors refueling on food and drinks.

It was a fun day all around, we got to know each other more, and the AdMedia team got even closer.

March 2012 – Lunch at Bocca Steakhouse and a Trip to the LA Gun Club Indoor Shooting Range

    

The AdMedia team got on our spacious party and headed to Bocca Steakhouse for lunch. After our scrumptious meal, we went to the Los Angeles Gun Club and tried our hands on some target shooting. We soon discovered that a lot of AdMedia employees were naturally talented shooters and it looks like most of us will be coming back!

April 2012 – The Los Angeles Lakers vs. the New Jersey Nets at the Staples Center

      

It was a great game at the Staples Center on April 3rd! The Lakers beat the Nets 91 – 87. LA was leading the whole game, but got pretty close at the end. Good thing Kobe made a three-pointer and sealed the Lakers’ victory.

Great game + great food + great company. ‘Nuff said.

June 2012 – Wine Tasting and Comedy Luncheon

  

We had some good laughs, good food, and good wine last June when the AdMedia team headed to the Herzog Wine Cellars in Oxnard. We enjoyed a delectable 3-course meal while being entertained by comedian Jason Love. After lunch, we got try 8 different types of wine. All of them were good, but the Pink Moscato emerged as a crowd favorite.

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The Secret to Successful Remarketing is Utilizing Various Channels

Posted August 7, 2012 by fran @ 10:14 am

If the online advertising world were a classroom, Remarketing ads would be the bright student that always gets results. This advertising model effectively brings users back to a website and can increase conversion rates to up to 125%.

However, not a lot of people are aware that Remarketing has an overachieving sibling that has an even higher success and conversion rate. Meet Cross Channel Remarketing, the advertising innovation by AdMedia that enables advertisers to take their Remarketing campaigns to a whole new level.

Typical Remarketing campaigns reach consumers through display ads across various websites on the web. And while this indeed brings results, users browsing the web utilize so many more channels beyond display. Cross Channel Remarketing taps into these other channels and allows advertisers to market via search, mobile, email, video, and more.

If a user visits your website without buying anything, Cross Channel Remarketing will tag that person’s computer and remarket your products and services across multiple channels—not just through display banner ads. This means that they will see the ads for your site even when they’re watching videos, doing an Internet search, or even when they’re on their mobile phone.

Fretting about looking like stalker? Don’t. There’s no need to worry about appearing too creepy because Cross Channel Remarketing allows you to set a frequency cap on your ads to ensure that users won’t come across them too often.

Going Beyond Display Ads

Mobile – It’s undeniable that we’re moving towards a more mobile world, thanks to apps, GPS, and other mobile-friendly websites. We understand this completely, which is why we’ve designed Cross Channel Remarketing to touch base with users even when they’re out and about. Why settle for ads that only appear on PCs and laptops, when you can go mobile and reach more users?

Overlay Ads – Cross Channel Remarketing lets you put your ads on top of the most dynamic parts of a web page: images and videos. Some users have developed a blind spot when it comes to typical ad locations (i.e. sidebars, top of the page, etc.). Overlay Ads allows you to get around these blind spots and appear on places that get guaranteed eyeballs.

PreRollStream – Speaking of guaranteed eyeballs, using videos is another great way to generate views for your ads. Users that watch online videos are already engaged; take advantage of this interest and anticipation by placing your ads on top of what they’re about to watch. If they see a commercial for something that they’re already interested in, they’ll be more likely to return to your website to complete the purchase.

Intextual – Does your target audience frequent news sites, blogs, and other text-heavy web pages? If so, then you should consider Cross Channel Remarketing’s Intextual model. Intextual, also known as in-text ads, appear as underlined keywords on a web page. Users will see your ad whenever they hover over these words. Intextual saves space and is known for being unobtrusive. Since they only appear when users mouse-over selected keywords, people’s browsing experience isn’t interrupted.

Image credit:  ##Erika** on Flickr

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3 Remarkable Courses that Can Turn You into an Online Advertising Genius

Posted August 1, 2012 by fran @ 10:38 am

Whether you’re a small business owner who wants to gain new customers, or a blogger that wishes to make more money through affiliate programs, knowing the ins and outs of online advertising is a must. Having knowledge about how Internet advertising works will not only allow you to create campaigns that are more effective, it will also save you a lot of money in ad costs.

But where exactly do you get all this information? Well, your ad network is a good place to start. Check out the FAQ page of your ad agency’s website or better yet, call them with a list of questions. You can also read blog posts and articles in the industry for how-to information and news.

However, if you really want to go in depth in your online advertising education, you should consider purchasing online courses and e-books. One of the best things about these resources is that once you download them, you’ll be able to access the information whenever you want. No need to call customer service for clarifications, and no need to conduct multiple internet searches when you have questions. With these courses, you always have the information close to your fingertips.

The following courses below are some of our recommendations for those that wish to learn more about online advertising. (For the full list of online courses visit AppSumo.com or Udemy.com)

1. PPC for small business (PRICE: $5 on AppSumo) – Authored by Elizabeth Marsten (Director of Search at Portent), this two-part e-book series focuses on teaching small business owners (i.e. solopreneurs, proprietorships, consultants, freelancers, etc) how to do PPC ads right. Marsten specifically writes for those with small advertising budgets (think less than $1000 per month) and teaches users how they can make the most out of it.

Book 1 will teach you all the basics, from what PPC is and how to determine what people are searching for, to choosing the right keywords and how to starting bidding and buying. Book 2 on the other hand delves into troubleshooting, getting more out of your budget, optimizing conversion, and enhancing CPC.

2. SEO Tips and Tricks with SEOmoz (PRICE: Free on Udemy) – This course  will show you the ropes in Search Engine Optimization so that you can effectively improve your website and increase traffic. This course is a great supplement when you’re studying online advertising, as it will give you the lowdown on how the industry works. Combine your online advertising knowledge with a solid SEO background, and you’ll be unstoppable.

3. How to Turn Traffic & Trust into Saless ($67 on AppSumo) – So more people are starting to notice you, and your website is finally on the map (thanks to ads and/or SEO), now it’s time to turn all that traffic and attention into dough. If you intend to earn extra revenue online, then affiliate marketing could be the right solution for you. This 74-page e-book will walk you through everything you need to know about the industry, from identifying profitable niches to setting up advanced tracking for your campaigns. You’ll even learn about how the best bloggers have done it, and you’ll get tons of insights on how to get accepted to even the most selective of affiliate networks.

Image credit: faith goble on Flickr

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Impress with a Great Website

Posted July 24, 2012 by Marina @ 10:07 am

As hard as it is to get customers and viewers to your website, it is easy to let them get away when you don’t have a proper page to keep them there.

Sure, you may have a stellar remarketing campaign and your social media following is through the roof, but what if when a customer or guest makes it to your website and they can’t even navigate it? Is it cluttered with too much information or products from the start page? These are the issues that you have to worry about when you’re beginning your campaigns in attempt to increase your conversion rates.

Half the battle is getting people to your website, but that’s not the end-game for making a sell. First of all, while your advertisements are great and could be very effective, they are more like the picture of a person on a dating website. Sure, it’s a small look at what you’re getting, but there’s no substance and no personality to go along with it.

Advertisements are previews (teasers) that will draw everyone to the main attraction, giving them the ultimate first impression once they get the full thing. That’s why as much time as you put in on your advertisements and marketing campaigns, your website should receive just as much, if not more attention than those other factors. Having an interactive, easily navigated, accessible website could be the difference from a new customer and a bad review.

Simply put, there are things that you need to be sure of when you’re building up your website in order to ensure that people will have no problems when they visit to make a purchase of some sorts.

Organization – What good is an online business if people can’t find the proper buttons or categories to make that purchase? Sure, you could be providing the best quality items on the internet with excellent customer service, but does it matter if people can’t properly navigate the website to get the information they need? Have everything of importance — including contact info, categories, deals, etc. — in an easy-to-find matter so your potential customers don’t have to spend more time looking for information than they need to.

Highlight Focus – The best part about building and operating your own online business and website is that you know exactly where you want the focus to go when people enter your site. Say you have a huge new deal or some blowout savings that you know for a fact you can profit from; it’s in your best interest to make those deals and products the focus of your initial home page. Sliding images, BIG CAPITALIZED LETTERS, bold font; make sure that people see your biggest and best factors that you know they will love and you can make a profit off of.

Simple – Your website is designed to entice customers with the products you have and the service you provide. It is not necessary to go too far on your website design when you go above and beyond to please your customers through every purchase or inquiry they make. No need for a Flash laser-light show when someone enters your website to keep them involved; keep things simple, it’s for the better.

First impression is a key to success; don’t let it slip away.

Image credit: Robert Couse-Baker on Flickr

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Need Inspiration for your ads? These 5 sites should do the trick.

Posted July 17, 2012 by fran @ 12:21 pm

Ideas can either make or break your ad campaigns. Even if you’ve found the perfect online ad network that offers fast and easy services with ad formats that are great for your products or services, your campaign won’t take off if it isn’t backed by interesting ideas and solid strategies. That’s why continuously coming up with unique concepts is key to having long lasting success in advertising. You always have to strive to keep those good ideas coming in order to stay ahead of the competition and gain more customers.

The good news is there isn’t a shortage of resources that you can draw ideas from. You may think that inspiration is hard to find these days, but the truth is, there are plenty of brilliant concepts to go around, you just have to know where to look.

Not sure where to start? Check out the 5 websites below. These unsung blogs are excellent sources of the most brilliant ads out there, and you should definitely visit them if you need to get your creative juices flowing.

1. Between 10 and 5 – This site showcases the most creative works in the advertising world and beyond. From graphic designs and photographs, to print, video, and TV ads, Between 10 and 5 is an awesome resource for all things creative. See the story behind your favorite TV advertisement or discover obscure but excellent works on the site.

2. Adverblog – Founded in 2003, Adverblog aims to deliver “the best and forget the rest” in digital advertising and marketing. Check this blog and see some of the most interesting advertisements in the world. What’s great about Adverblog though, is that the guys and girls behind it don’t just upload a couple of videos or images then call it a blog post. They actually insert their own insights and tell a little bit of the stories behind the ads, ensuring that each post is an interesting one.

3. Ads of the World – This website offers the ultimate archive of great ads from all around the globe. Aside from showcasing creative works though, Ads of the World also offers a forum where members are able to discuss any topic related to advertising. Feel free to ask questions, comment, and critique. Need a job or looking for one? Check out the jobs forum and you could just find the advertising career that you’re looking for.

4. AdPulp – This site has a more activist slant in the industry. You’ll find a lot of great ad campaigns here, but on top of that, the guys at AdPulp post informative commentaries about ads and what’s happening in the industry, and the site strikes the perfect balance between being entertaining and informative. Be sure to check it out!

5. The Canned Banners Notebook – Canned Banners is a website that allows people to create their own banner ads with the use of their ad builder. They also have a blog called “The Canned Banners Notebook” wherein they showcase some of their clients as well as provide tips for effective ads in general. This site is must-visit if you need inspiration for your banner ads.

Image credit:  photosteve101 on Flickr

 

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