setting price for advetising on website
Hi all, I am looking to launch a website and what I am dealing with is how to structure a price for companies to advertise on the site. By it being a new site I was looking to allow a month or two free as an incentive for businesses to advertise with me, then maybe charge by 1 week, 2 weeks or a month. The site will pretty much be like an online mag for the metro area.
Lets take a look at the cow for example. Do they charge companies by a month block or a week block? What does one usually charge? This will be local business so $500 a month, $1000? or much less? I am researching online just wanted to see what if anyone had some info to share.
As I am the guy who helped establish the COW from the beginning and set its rates, I guess that I am the right guy to answer the question.
Getting advertisers to advertise with you is VERY difficult. Especially in 2009. You have to have a reason for them to spend their hard-earned money with you and that reason is usually found in traffic numbers that can be proven. (We use direct-measuring services from Google (Google Analytics) and Quantcast.com as they aren't guessing -- usually poorly, in the case of things like Alexa.com and others whose numbers are meaningless today. We chuckle that both Google and Quantcast shows us as having tripled in size in 2008, while Alexa.com shows us as collapsing and losing traffic at astronomical rates. Yeah, right. Go figure. Because of this, we hardly ever bother checking Alexa.com anymore.)
A working formula is one that is usually a blend of raw numbers (how many visitors, visits and pageviews a site gets during a month) and the demographic data (who these people are and what they represent) to back up these numbers.
Most sites use Google Ad Sense to get something (which is better than nothing) for all their effort. As I said, it is tough to get the kind of banner ads we get on your site. We have been at this for almost 14 years now and have learned what it takes to do it in our market.
Aside from Google Ad Sense, you may look into some of the banner ad services that are out there that work and pay on a per-click scheme. We do not use them, so I do not remember any of the names off-hand, but you can do a Google search and it will likely return a number of them for you.
It is only after years of effort and proving yourself that you are going to be able to get direct advertising for your site. In the beginning, you will be lucky to find one or two companies that believe in you. Like most things in life, it is not easy and takes a long time. Most people tire along the way and so -- as in most all things in life -- very few succeed at it.
All I can give you for advice is keep your day job. Do something that you love and do it for the love of it. Don't set out to do it for money because -- as in our case -- we lost money for about 8 years before the site ever got into the black.
Oh, and a last bit of advice, hobbies are way cheaper than businesses.
Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.
Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
- Antoine de Saint Exupéry
Because it was so new to my world and the world of my sponsors, I was able to just make up numbers, based on what I knew they would part with, not based on worth or views. I knew in calling a sponsor what they could or would part with and looking back, that was usually the price in my head ready for answer when they asked how much. Not the most sound approach but it's not a one size fits all world. While I understand charging one guy one price and another a different price could bite me, I always swap services for ads, not just throw up a banner. By this, justifying price has always been very easy.
There is plenty of room for creativity.
Thanks, informative on both parts. I do feel I can push the site and make it successful if not at least break even with any cash I spend. Let me know what you think about this. I thought of going to some very well known companies around here and let them know I have a site were they can advertise. I was thinking of giving them 3 mos free of exposure for 3 mos of paid advertisement.l Also if needed would exchange some video services for a co effort in advertising the site, same as you grin. Businesses I was looking at is credit unions and some local business chains.
Can anyone chime in on ways or ideas of purusing business. I am quite sure this has been covered already but maybe some new ideas can spring up.