Pheedo Tests Multi-Channel Ads

Blog and RSS feed advertising network Pheedo has begun testing a program to make it easier for advertisers to create integrated, multi-channel campaigns across blogs, Web feeds and podcasts.

“If your ad message is only in one of these channels, there’s a chance it will be missed by part of the customer base,” Bill Flitter, Pheedo’s founder and CMO, told ClickZ News. “We’re tying the channels together for the advertisers to make sure the consumers will get the message in their preferred way.”

Pheedo has been running integrated campaigns for a handful of advertisers since June on a less formal basis, but are now building a turn-key program, which should be ready to launch by the end of the year. The RSS analytics and ad server and blog ad network are already in place. To complete the offering, Pheedo is currently developing technology around podcast ad serving and building out its podcast network.

“Our goal is to make it as easy as possible on the advertiser side to run campaigns across different formats,” Flitter said. “From the publisher perspective, it’s about using and seeing these different channels as very marketable properties — particularly when integrated together.”

The ad buy will be structured as a package deal, with guaranteed impression counts for the RSS and blog inventory. The podcast portion is measured by the number of average downloads from previous shows. Pheedo’s RSS analytics engine and ad server is used to track the results of the campaign.

Flitter advises advertisers to create unique ads for each medium, rather than try to force the same ad to fit into them all. “If you look at how people interact with feeds and podcasts, especially, you see that they’re scanning the content. They have a fast-forward button to skip past ads that don’t engage them,” Flitter said.

Even the most creative ad won’t help some advertisers, at least not until blogs, feeds and podcasts gain a wider audience, he added. So far, Flitter has found the most successful blog and RSS advertisers are technology, video game or automotive advertisers, or publishers. The least successful campaigns have hawked online dating services or mortgages.

“Not every product or service is right for the medium at this point. There may not be the right demographic match, or there may not be enough reach for some. As blogs become more mainstream, that will change,” Flitter says.

Pheedo’s current offering inlcudes text ads in feeds — turned into an image file to make it easy to rotate new ads in — and text/image combination ads on blogs. Pheedo is currently developing new ad units with similar characteristics, but which Flitter promises will be more dynamic and integrate better within an RSS and blog environment.

“RSS and blogs are a new medium and consumers are using them differently then say how they use search or read websites. This fundamental change requires new thinking in how ads are displayed and even what an ad is,” he said.

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