FM Launches Toolkit for Advertisers

Federated Media, John Battelle’s branded blog network, has introduced its public-facing ad management platform.

The new platform lets advertisers browse FM’s roster of 45 or so Web sites by audience profile, and view inventory in real-time. Ads, which include graphical banners and text formats, are sold on a CPM basis. Advertisers can choose to target segments such as “Business Influencers,” “Cultural Trendsetters,” “Hip Parents,” “Momentum And Buzz,” “Tech Innovators,” and “Tech Professionals.”

Battelle said that even the biggest advertisers, the ones that likely won’t use the self-service platform to place their buys, can benefit from it.

“Even if you’re a big time agency that’s never going to buy on the site, it’s a very handy tool to do planning and track your campaigns,” he said. “If you buy from us through an RFP system, your campaigns are going to be available through this platform.”

He added, “For smaller advertisers who just want to… spend a few bucks on BoingBoing or their favorite blog, it’s a simple way to do that.”

Unlike many other blog networks, FM’s system allows site authors to accept or reject advertisers’ campaigns.

To promote the self-service tool and build awareness, the company is offering 35 percent off all campaigns placed while the self-service tool is still in beta.

Battelle’s branded network model is only one of several business approaches being tried around advertising in Weblogs. Others include flat fee approaches like Henry Copeland’s BlogAds, big contextual networks like Google’s AdSense and Philip Kaplan’s AdBrite, and sole proprietorships like Gawker Media.

The company’s roster reads like a who’s who of tech, business, lifestyle and culture Weblogs, including sites like BoingBoing, Digg, Dooce, Fark and Metafilter. The company represents a total of 70 million pageviews a month, according to a company statement.

Numerous major brand advertisers have already placed campaigns with FM. These include Absolut, Adobe, Apple, Budget Rental Car, Citibank, Dreamworks, GM, Intel, Microsoft and Sony, according to the company.

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