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Mobile is going to be a huge challenge for us….it will not ultimately be entirely additive despite optimistic picture on that in the attached AdAge piece – it will start to cannibalize desktop (I think we’re already starting to see this). As I have long feared and bemoaned, the industry has allowed ad nets to poison the well (candidly we still take the $ here, and I think lack the marketplace leverage to do anything on our own about this issue). And as usual, buyers don’t step up with $ to back innovation and new opportunities (it’s all the talk at trade conferences, but no action).
But here’s the real scary thing… even if all those problems are addressed, at the end of the day the display inventory load on mobile is going to be MUCH lower than desktop, meaning mobile CPMs need to be 2-3x desktop in order to bring in comparable revenue per pageview. Good luck with that.
Actually, we’re going to have to get a lot smarter about trying to layer in as many ads, monetizing features (like sponsorships, Vibrant-like linking, push alerts, geo-targeting, coupon delivery/scanning, etc.) and other revenue streams as possible in ways that enhance the user experience. I believe it can theoretically be done. I doubt our ability to pull it off given lack of vision, support, resources.
The people driving the online ad business (and now mobile) from Day One have been DR-types and aggregators/wholesalers. Because they’re inherently evil? No, because WE let them.