LIVErtising questions… answered
Question # 1 – “I have a small question concerning the chapter on investments in different advertising techniques. I am a bit confused as to what is “Content integration / integrated content”. I don’t really understand what is exactly.”
Content integration is the integration of advertising content (branded games, branded microsites, branded videos, branded videogames, branded contests – all this is entertainment, but it can be more serious content, such as company white papers, training videos, podcasts, webinars) into another website than the advertiser’s or even on the advertiser’s more general/informative website. The integration of a youtube channel on a website is an example – cfr Blendtech, or Mentos/Coke. Of the more professional type is the contents we have used on Hubspot’s blog, such as the website grader.
So, it is not a separate advertising product or technique, it is the integration of existing or new content on a website for branding/advertising purposes. The approach is non-interruptive; it is based on permission and aims to go viral, i.e. get to the level of networked, participatory advertising. It belongs to “content marketing”, which aims to build a relationship with your audience through the value, the contents you provide them.
Question #2 – “What is the difference between the concepts of Adsense and Adserver?”
They are really different in nature, even if they look alike. Adsense is a Google service that enables any website to run contextual ads, in order to monetize the site, typically on a PPC basis. Adserver or Ad Server is a hardware and software service used to run, analyze and optimise online advertising campaigns.
So: Adsense is a Google service. It offers any website owner the possibility to subscribe to the programme, in order to run on his/her website Google ads based on contextual targeting. If your site deals with your love for swimming, it will feature Google ads connected to swimming. Those ads may be text, picture or video. This provides the website owner to earn money each time somebody clicks on the ad (PPC), although there is also a possibility to be paid on a CPM basis. This is a form of affiliation / lead generation programme, and qualifies as inbound / permission marketing, as it offers the advertiser a way to get interested people to go to their site. There is an obvious connection with Google’s Adwords service, though the two concepts, Adwords and Adsense, are obviously different. The other major search engines have similar programmes.
If the Adwords – Adsense difference is no longer clear to you, here is a video to help you see it clearly: a (moving) picture is worth a thousand words.
Now, Adserver: bigger websites that host much advertising may use the service of a third party company – an adserver. It offers a service include hardware (servers) and software that help manage the ads on the site thanks to HTML tags inserted on the webpages that are to carry the ads. Each ad space is an open space with tags, that get specific ad content (specific ads) from the adserver programme, based on targeting criteria (geographic, contextual, behavioural). So, the same webpage on the site will show different ads to different visitors, and all this is based on the tags on the page and the database on the webserver, that “serves” appropriate ads. Next, the adserver software produces all kinds of statistics (number of impressions, number of clicks, clickstream, … for each campaign.