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Google Ad Manager

Posted by Michael Bloch in web marketing (Monday March 17, 2008 )

Selling your own ad space can be a really time consuming and complex exercise. In a move that’s sure to set the fur and feathers flying in the ad server world; Google Ad Manager will give publishers a trusted name behind ad management and ad sales – and it will be for the most part free.

Google Ad Manager is a 3rd party hosted ad management service geared towards small to medium business that can help you sell and manage all of your direct ad sales and network-based inventory. While use of the application is free, Google will take a slice of revenue from ads it sells on your behalf – which is fair enough in my opinion as the Google brand association is as good as money in the bank. I’m not sure how big the slice that Google will take is, but other similar setups I’ve worked with take anywhere from 20% to 50%.

The service is currently “beta” (isn’t everything these days) and you’ll need an invitation to give it a whirl.

Ad Manager will allow you to not only sell ad space directly from your site; it will also handle other 3rd party networks or you’ll be able to specify AdSense ads to appear as defaults if you have no other premium inventory.

I can’t wait to give this a run – aside from being a very useful application, the fact that Google is behind it is going to lend more credibility to sites using it and increased credibility should result in increased ad sales.

The bad news is for other companies selling ad server software and networks using the same model – I’m sure they are spitting chips at this news; much like the metrics measurement sector did when Google bought Urchin a few years back and then offered that for free also.

Google isn’t the only game in town when it comes to free ad server apps – there’s also Open X; which is the old phpAdsNew evolved. It’s in use by 30,000 publishers – a robust and feature rich platform; but with somewhat of a learning curve to match in my opinion based on the last time I used it under its previous name.


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