Re: CPA vs. CPM the issue?

From: Janet Attard <>
Date: Thu 05 Jul 2001 10:24:43 -0500


> Because almost anybody who wants to can open up a web
> site (and most everybody has it seems), the number of
> web sites on various topics is much larger than it would
> be if people were required to obtain licenses in advance
> of setting up web sites

Oh, please.....let's not wave the licensing flag.
Licensing does little to guarantee any kind of quality
on anything so generic as web development. It just
guarantees someone filled out a form and paid a fee and
someone made money collecting that fee. Our customers
have always included some of the biggest corporations
(and online services) in the country. Having to be
licensed wouldn't change the quality of the work we
deliver, and new companies being licensed couldn't
guarantee delivery of similar services without a track
record. How does one guarantee an audience if one has
never created one before? All the schooling and tests
in the world don't build desirable web sites that
attract loyal audiences. People build web sites and
make them work. Not licensing.

(off my soapbox.....)

> The side benefit of licensing would be that the number
> of web sites would decline where licensing was required.

I seriously doubt it. At least not the number of web
sites that have serious commecial intentions, whether
those intentions. All it would do is rule out those who
have decent products or services to sell, but who can't
afford to pay the licensing fee. The little retail
boutique, for instance, that supplements its income and
helps keep afloat by having a web store as well as
the storefront that brings in business during tourist
season. Or the single mother who has uses a web site as
a brochure to help sell her typing services, so she can
have a way to support her two young kids.

> Whether web sites as a group would offer better content
> with less competition is arguable.

Agreed, it is arguable.....and I'd hazard a guess the
quality of content would deteriorate considerably if
there is limited competition.

> Newspapers and magazines have long been metered in terms
> of response to advertising. What is the big deal?

I think all that any of us who are publishers are asking
is that we are held ONLY to the same standards print
publications are. It's our job to create and deliver
audiences. That's what other media, do, too. But if they
aren't held responsible for the number of people who read
more than the ad headline, even SEE the ad headline
(assuming they don't read every page in every pubication,
or sit watch every commercial on every TV show), then
why should we be treated any differently.

Audiences for quality sites like ours and many others on
this list have audiences who are influenced by branding.
They will go to a store to look at a product they've seen
on a site - or on many sites. They will ask for it by
name. They aren't going to tell the store clerk to notify
the manufacturer of all the web sites they saw the product
advertised on before coming in to actually look the product
over and make their final buying decision.

The same is true for services. And for direct click
throughs. How many times, on how many sites has any
individual seen an ad before clicking through. And how
many times do they click through- again from different
sites - before making a decision? The last site on which
the ad was seen is only one tiny piece in the whole
decision making process. Meanwhile, all the branding that
leads up to that sales plays a major role.

Now for those who might compare the web to direct marketing,
there are a couple of big differences. While the click
throughs are trackable, as I think I said in an earlier
message, the publisher delivering the audience - like the
post office - has no contol over whether the mail gets
opened or anthing gets done after it's opened.

In direct mail, any company that stays in business will
test one thing at a time to find out what works. You can't
test "one thing" at a time on the web when you have an ad
agency place an ad on a network of differnet sites. In
fact, you can't test anything, IMHO, since there are too
many variables.. everything from slight - or big -
differences in the audience to how long the page takes to
load, to whether the color of the ad is so bland or so
similar to any page it shows up on that it just fades
into the background.

> Long term survival on the internet requires money. Do
> what you must to get it.

It seems to me a LOT of dead dot-coms - some with quite
good content - tried that route.

Frankly, I think part of the answer is to look at both
different forms of advertising and different ways of ad
placement.. and testing. In some cases ads we've had on
our site came through interactive agencies, who in turn
had made contacts with a bigger agency.. so by the time
we got paid, we got a fourth of what the advertiser
actually paid for the ads. Advertisers might find it
preferable for the online world to develop their own
in-house agencies. They'd pay less and the small
publishers would get more, and if they took the effort
to clue the small publishers in on how to sell their
product, the advertiser would get more out of their ad
dollars, too.

--Janet Attard
Business Know-How(sm)
Content, community, and tools for small and home businesses <>
Phone 888-862-4605

Received on Thu Jul 05 2001 - 10:24:43 CDT


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