RSS, blog, podcasting and other Internet terms we might consider popular and widely accepted, actually sound weird to a lot of Internet users. A study by the Pew Internet and American Life Project found out 87 percent of US Internet users don’t know what podcasting is, while 91 percent ignore RSS. Recently I spend a couple of hours trying to explain my mother what the hell Adverblog is…
If you want to skip the ads, read your favorite news sites through RSS feeds. Maybe I should not write this, considering the fact I’m trying to sell advertising spaces here on Adverblog, but actually I’m just reporting one of the ideas that come out from this article on marketing and RSS on the New York Times. I don’t completely agree with the idea of regarding RSS as the Internet TiVo, however I believe this association isn’t totally wrong. We need to consider that news publishers usually provide only an abstract of the article in the feed, so if people want to read the full story, they have to click and visit the site where they will be exposed to the advertising messages. However, if one uses RSS just to “browse” the content of a news site instead of visiting the homepage, in this case RSS helps to avoid the ads and just get an overview of the articles, so it might be considered as the Internet TiVo. But don’t worry, since rss marketing is becoming an hot topic, advertisers are managing to show up also on feeds.
MSN and Fox Sports are targeting sport fans with an opt-in service which allows users to receive scores and news alerts via RSS and MSN Messenger. DMNews explains this idea will allow MSN to offer advertisers with extremely targeted marketing opportunities. The technology will be provided by MessageCast which has already reached extremely positive results delivering beauty ads to L’Oreal’s subscribers in Britain and Germany.
RSS is raising marketer’s expectations in finding a solution to the e-newsletter decline. I’ve already talked about ‘marketing and RSS’ a couple of months ago now, thanks to an article by Janis Mara on IAR, there’s the chance to further discuss the issue. It seems that in the US there’s a company, RSSAds, ready to launch a new online ad network. As the article’s author says tracking of content and ad viewing has always been one of RSS’s weak point, but RSSAds Ceo, Chad Williams claims that his company tracks ad views by means of a simple transparent image file. Whenever the RSS reader calls back to the server for the image, it counts as an ad impression. RSSAds are coming up with several ad serving pricing options: cost-per-click, cost-per-time-period, cost-per-insert and cost-per-thousand impressions models and pay-for-performance ads which is expected to become the most popular. It sounds interesting but also rather complicated. If it works, it’s probably a gold mine. If it doesn’t…
I�m writing an article about RSS and I�ve been reading quite a lot on the topic to get informed. There are a lot of articles and opinions out there about the marketing potentials of RSS. You can read some enthusiastic people saying that RSS is an unspammable medium, that it can deliver the advertising message using a �pull� model, that it�s cost effective, etc� On the other side the negative voices will tell you that it�s not measurable, that RSS is just for geeks, that is not (yet) integrated in email software, etc� I would like to take a different (and additional) perspective in the discussion, not considering RSS for what they really are in their substance. I believe the main issue about RSS� marketing potentials is connected to the information overload. There are tons of softwares installed on our computers: browsers, email readers, instant messengers, p2p, toolbars, desktop alerts etc� We get messages from everywhere, either in push or pull way (and I�m just considering computer mediated communication!). At work my Internet browser is always open. If I want to see if a Web site has been updated I just click on its link from my bookmarks. I don�t have to start another software and get the information downloaded on my computer. I do have a newsaggregator installed on my Mac, but I rarely use it. Maybe because I�m kind of lazy (I admit it), maybe because there are already too many windows open on my desktop, delivering me any kind of information just one click (and 5 seconds) away. I would tend to compare this point with the one associated to e-commerce web sites. The more clicks to buy a product, the less products get sold. The more clicks to get an headline, the less headlines� So I�m not saying RSS aren�t a fascinating medium. They are extremely attractive from a marketing perspective. I�m just saying there are already tons of information out there, but a day has only 24 hours, at least mine�
Tom Hespos wrote yesterday on MediaPost an excellent article to explain the marketing power of RSS (Really Simple Syndication). Apparently operating on the push model, they actually put consumer in control, since it’s up to the end user to decide which content to receive. RSS might be seen as a “spam” free” alternative to email marketing. I believe text-based ads will work for RSS feeds. RSS represent another chance for contextual advertising. Relevant advertising content can be put at the end of the feed. However I think it will be important to clearly separate the feed content from the advertising content. RSS appear to be a powerful tool for marketers, and it’s important to immediately gain people’s trust. Two simple words like “sponsored link” might do the job.
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