The writer-publisher – part 34

Blog advertising is taking off – make your reservations now!

For the past three months, I have been advertising my book on Chris Muir’s Day By Day cartoon strip. This generated thousands of hits for my Danger Quicksand – Have A Nice Day site at a price I could afford.

I recently went to renew my ad placement for another three months and found that the 3-month ad rates had increased from $270 to $2000. Outside of a brief moment of sticker shock, the primary reaction was regret that I had not purchased a longer term contract when I started.

Chris has every right to set ad rates based on the traffic and visibility afforded by his increasingly popular website. If he sells ad space on his site at this new rate, he will be reaping the rewards for his unique ability to capture important issues in a 3-cell daily comic strip.

He will never again worry about getting his comic strip syndicated in the newspapers of the world. The newspapers are no longer able to afford him!

He is also setting an example for other cartoonists, political and otherwise. If you can create traffic by capturing the imagination of readers or by amusing them, you can generate income by selling ad space on your site. In essence, you can create your own one-page newspaper with highly focused content and advertisers.

Day By Day is not the only weblog-type site to raise prices.   Overheard in the Office has almost doubled their ad rates in the last few months. I have not seen many popular sites where the rates have remained unchanged. This means that advertisers need to make long term commitments when they find a site that works for them.

We used to say that Internet time was 3 times faster than normal time. I think that time in the blogosphere has been kicked up even further. We see changes occur in months that used to take years. It forces a whole new way of thinking and requires a new strategy for placing ads.

I will continue advertising on blogs, but I am going to have to stay flexible in order to get my messages out in a cost-effective manner. There are a lot more advertisers competing for scarce blog space and the prices will only go higher.

The increasing viability of blog ads means that upscale bloggers with real content are more likely to generate income as bloggers. Imagine that, respectability!

"What do you do for a living?"
"I blog!"
"Really?"
"Yes, I used to write for magazines, but I make a better living as a blogger."

The future’s so bright – gotta wear shades…  🙂

UPDATE:

Jeff Jarvis of Buzzmachine has moved into advertising in a big way. He notes:

Sometime today (when my webmaster gets off the school bus), a big-ass
ad will likely appear atop this page. It’s for a Warner Brothers movie
and they came to me, which is cool. More on that later. I’m trying lots
of ad things to try to learn: BlogAds, Burst, Google, Yahoo, Feedburner
RSS. And today at Web 2.0 I’ll be leading a discussion on advertising in this  distributed world.

If you act fast, you can get a three month Blogad on Jeff’s Buzzmachine for only $1500. Next month, the rate will be anyone’s guess.

I understand that some of the heavy hitters in the advertising world are switching from old-time media ads to Internet advertising for high returns at a fraction of the usual cost. Stay tuned for more exciting developments.

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