Does AOL plan on joining Google’s newly unveiled ad exchange?
No for now, says AOL ad boss (and ex-Googler) Jeff Levick in an interview with PaidContent.
Jeff — and CEO Tim Armstrong, also an ex-Googler — don’t want in on Google’s exchange because they feel like it will commoditize AOL’s premium advertising industry.
Here’s the relevant bit from PaidContent’s Q&A:
Google relaunched the DoubleClick Ad Exchange last week. What’s AOL’s approach to ad exchanges? Is that an area you’d like to build up?
Sure, we look at that space. But the approach here is not about throwing all the world’s transactions in one place and seeing how you can drive the price down to nothing. We want to drive value for publishers and advertisers. We’ve always been focused on premium and we’ll always be focused on premium. Tim has often referred to AOL as taking the Goldman Sachs model. That means being above all of this and trying to see where we can drive the highest value, and not looking to the lowest common denominator. If the exchanges give us more access to premium inventory, where we can use our tools to drive that higher value, then we’ll be interested. And when I talk about driving value, I don’t just mean that in a monetary sense. It’s value in terms of the goals of the advertiser.