RSS Advertising

Ovidiu wins the prize for the first person to mention (notice?) the little banner button I've put in my main RSS feed linking to John Kerry's campaign contribution page, and he asks a question I've wondered myself:

I was reading Russell Beattie's weblog this evening in my NetNewsWire RSS aggregator. What I noticed at the bottom of the article inside the RSS aggregator was a little changing image: an advertising campaign for John Kerry.

This has nothing to do with the above advertisement, but I was wondering how long will it be until we see people embedding Google content ads into their RSS feeds. Highly targetted ads to the contents of the article, of course.

Just to make it clear, no one is paying me for that ad - I just thought it was a good idea a while ago and now that my weblog code is more manageable, I threw it in yesterday when I remembered it. I'd love for more Kerry supporters to put links like this in their feeds as well to spread the word, show popular support and drive traffic to Kerry's site. (I'd also like the supporters of the other side to do the same so I know who's blogs to stop reading.)

Here's my thoughts on RSS advertising: I think it's a great idea - it's too bad that most advertisers hasn't caught up to this opportunity yet. A single line link at the top or bottom of "full-post" blog entry showing "sponsored by: XYZ corp" is unobtrusive, yet effective. Or using the button banner like I've done for John Kerry's site is (IMHO) not too obnoxious either.

Most sites' feeds gets much more traffic than the web pages - I've put a "web bug" image in a post before which shows that the number of people who see a post in their aggregator vs. on the web is like 5 to 1, so it just makes practical sense.

Let me say what's NOT a good idea though. If you're a media company and you're only providing titles and links back to your web page in your feeds? Then advertising on that feed is not right. Or doing what Moreover is doing now and inserting timed entries into their feeds with links to advertisers. That's obnoxious. Granted, Moreover needs to pay the bills as well, but there's a balance and seeing 20 new entries in a feed only to find that it's the same advertising link over and over again is annoying.

Anyways, if you're a Kerry supporter, remember that the July Democratic convention is the deadline for campaign contributions, so get out those credit cards and click on the link provided at the top of my blog or at the bottom of my post in your aggregator.


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