New Ad Network Pairs IAC Ad Solutions with HealthCentral Network

Three months after InterActiveCorp (IAC) took a minority stake in The HealthCentral Network, the two entities this week launched a new ad network for pharmaceutical companies as well as health and wellness marketers.

The HealthCentral Network, with more than 35 condition-specific, wellness and general health Web properties, will be the exclusive partner with IAC Ad Solutions [IAC/AS] for the network. The companies said the new platform will give health industry marketers access to more than 45 million monthly unique visitors across the IAC/AS network and 10 million monthly unique visitors on HCN�s targeted health sites.

“We and IAC Ad Solutions have decided to combine inventory in a very interesting way for pharmaceutical and consumer packaged good marketers,” said HealthCentral Network VP of Business Development Jeremy Shane. HCN will be IAC’s exclusive partner in marketing to prescription pharmaceutical companies and IAC will be our exclusive partner in marketing over-the-counter and packaged goods.”

Shane said the network will have a unique ability to combine HCN’s highly targeted health-focused audience with IAC’s “extensive reach into the ideal health consumer demographic.” The company described that demographic as mainly college-educated women between 35 and 55 with “high household incomes.”

As evidenced by the recently unveiled Network Advertising Initiative (NAI) draft revision of its eight-year-old self-regulatory code, some forms of targeted healthcare related advertising are controversial. Shane said the new IAC/HCN network will not allow advertisers to violate any online user’s privacy.

“On neither our sites nor on IAC sites do people provide personally identifiable health information,” Shane noted. “The targeting on our sites is purely contextual. For example, we have highly relevant information about treating and managing pain and a pain medicine ad would appear there.”

He also said the companies have in place “exclusion categories” that disallow ads on certain sensitive subjects. So, a person researching death would not be presented ads from casket makers or funeral homes.

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