Good news! PubMatic CEO Rajeev Goel — whose firm helps publishers optimise their ad inventory — tells us online ad prices finally began to stabilise during the second half of the first quarter. Rajeev says this momentum has so far carried into Q2.
Stabilizing doesn’t mean ad prices aren’t still going down, just that the rate of decline has abated.
This stabilisation has two contributing factors:
- Publishers are benefiting from finally making a clear distinction between the premium inventory they sell on their own and the remnant stuff they outsource to ad nets.
- The election, financial crises and general overwhelming confusion at the end of 2008 delayed the ad-planning process that usually takes place at the end of the year until the first six weeks of 2009.
Rajeev tells us there are three types ad networks his publisher clients work with that are preforming particularly well in the recession and leading the stabilisation charge. They are:
Ad networks with “real technology,” that offer “deep performance solutions” to help publishers use and consume data. These firms saw that big ad networks like Ad.com have a monopoly on strong, trusted relationships with ad agencies, so they pursued a different angle and invested in deeper tech. Rajeev works with lots of different ad nets of this type and didn’t want to name his favourites for fear of excluding a valuable partner. From our experience, we’d guess a few good examples of this type of ad net might be Collective Media, Interclick or Tribal Fusion..
Ad nets that have developed and now “own” very strong position in a niche. Examples include Glam in the fashion and women’s market. Niches that remain fragmented and risky include sports, tech, finance, and green.
Ad nets that help U.S. publishers sell ads against foreign traffic better than mainstream U.S. ad nets can. A good example is how Ad Pepper hooks publishers up with better ads for their German traffic.
Update: An earlier version of this post listed “TravelFusion” as an ad net with great tech. We meant Tribal Fusion.