Wanted: full featured ad management system

Hi guys. Sorry I've been a bit out of the loop for a few months. Bought a house and was shocked at how much time renovation took.

Anyway, I'm looking for a full-featured ad management system that can handle lots of advertisers, scheduling the start and stop of their campaigns, different ads for each advertiser in different parts of the Web site (and in email newsletters), the ability to provide both automated reporting and the ability to turn that on and off for each advertiser... you get the idea.

I've found a few addons on the WP site, but if you're looking for a new plug-in suggestion, this one is mine for you. Oh, and it needs to be multi-site and allow advertisers to run a campaign on one site, all sites, or a selection.

Thanks,
David

  • James Farmer

    @nelnehal that's a good point - the scope of this kind of thing would, you imagine, be much better handled by a third part provider.

    However, that doesn't mean that a 'straightforward' ad management plugin for wordpress (single and multisite) wouldn't be a bad thing, and it could be in demand.

    So, something that basically allowed site owners to offer advertising space, sign up advertisers, manage the advertising options and ads (inc scheduling, queues etc.), report on PIs / clicks and take payment.

    Feel free to spec it out a bit more :slight_smile:

    There could also be a 'man ual' section to manage newsletters etc.

    Also, any more +1s?

  • David

    Well, personally, I don't want to use third party ad management systems. It's taken me years to wean advertisers from those systems -- notorious for spamming ads, and (sadly) for not paying their bills. I much prefer running the entire business relationship in-house. My advertisers are my customers and I am their supplier. No middle-people.

    There are a lot of elements I'd like to see, but I think it's important to selectively turn on or off self-service. I don't mind self-service ads, but I much prefer to be able to interact directly with my customers and not rely on the Web site as the sole form of interaction (geez, I sound like Michael Scott on the Office, don't I?).

    Key to this are the themes of flexibility and accountability. It's important that ad programs be completely customizable for campaign, advertiser, and site. Ads should be purchasable for a given period of time or given number of impressions or given number of clicks. Ads should be able to be scheduled to stop and start at specific times, and auto-renew.

    It wouldn't hurt to allow ad networks to feed into the ad program, for example, for every 20 impressions presented to paying advertisers, throw in one impression for Google Ads. This also leads to the ability to mix in some number of house ads with paying ads, and to allow a certain number of rotations (or percentage of total rotations) for any given ad program or campaign.

    Newsletter ads are equally important. I'd love to be able to place five or ten ads in a given newsletter, and if they're all sold, they all show up, one after the other. If not, they just truncate down to the number that run. It'd also be cool to rotate those ads up, so each week, each advertiser gets a higher slot in the rotation.

    I'd like to see ads that are not just text or not just banners, but could be a mix of text and banners. I'd also like to be able to assign a limit to the number of rotations available, so the ad delivery isn't too diluted (like, say, a total of 20 ad rotations shown).

    Then, there's lead generation. It'd be nice to be able to catalog everyone who clicked on an ad, and make that list of clickers an optional report for the advertiser. I'd like to be able to get information on all the advertisers and possibly, see at a glance the status of all ads across all advertisers and sites.

    That should do for now. If you want more details, let me know.

  • David

    I'm glad you're interested. Maybe a few real-world scenarios will help. These are some of the programs we've got with some advertisers.

    YEAR LONG:
    Advertiser pays by check in March for an ad program that runs on one site, from April through the following March. We run one banner ad rotation at the top of the page on all pages (there are 20 rotations, so this advertiser is shown 5% of the time). We also run one text ad at the bottom of each page.

    Each week, in our weekly email newsletter, the advertiser has an ad which consists of a graphic and a text ad. We have ten other advertisers in the weekly email newsletter, so each week, the advertiser's ad moves up until it's the top ad, and then once it's the top ad, it drops down to the bottom and works its way back up.

    Each month, the advertiser gets a report of views and impressions for each ad. The program does not auto-renew.

    MONTH-BY-MONTH
    Another advertiser gets the same ads as above, but it runs just by the month. The advertiser pays a bit more, but has the option of cancelling the ad program before the next month's ads run. This advertiser also gets a report. We bill this company's card using a traditional charge machine, not an automated Web site charge.

    CROSS-SITE, MONTH-BY-MONTH
    Another advertiser runs ads (banner, text, and mailing ads, like above), but he runs in two sites. He's also month-by-month, but he gets a consolidated report of his ads across the sites.

    MULTI-AD
    Yet another advertiser runs four separate ads in the weekly email newsletter. Each ad rotates up through the 10, like the others, but the site he advertises on isn't as fully booked, so we have space to run other ads. In the email newsletter, we also fill in the ten slots with house ads that are prioritized after all the paying advertisers.

    On the Web site, which also isn't fully filled out in terms of advertisers, we run a total of 20 ad rotations, but since we haven't fully sold all the ads, we have about 10 paying advertisers, a few house ads, and make up the rest in Google Ads. All of these can be dynamically scheduled and weighted.

    ---

    Hope that helps give you a view of what we're trying to do.

  • ThePath

    Hi Guys, Check out OIO Publisher, it does everything you want and more. You can create as many ad zones as you like, place pretty much any kind of ad there, put in default ads (like Google etc). It also has a facility to charge for downloadable files and you can create you own affiliate system for the ads, so people can sell your ads for you and make a few bucks. Neat huh.

    Im using it on my blog and Ive written a wee post about it too: OIO Publisher Review and Discount Code

    Its not that expensive and you will find a discount code on the post above. Also if you want to buy it then do it via my site above as I'll get some commision.

    Hope that helps

  • ThePath

    @bogonroad Honestly check out OIO from link above. You can embed ads via PHP or JS. You need the JS if you want to rotate your banners, but if you only want to show one ad in each zone then you can use PHP!

    Its a lot better than 125x125 plugin as you have so many more ad types that you can display. Did I mention that advertisers can get analytics, OIO track clicks etc and displays a report for advertisers.

    Cant rate it highly enough, Id been looking for a system for a while and found OIO being used on another site. Its awesome and also has a buysellads.com marketplace linked to it too (you dont have to use it of course). Best of both worlds.

  • ThePath

    Easy enought to sort though, just take out the OIO reference to jquery. Although youd need to check that the payment pages dont require it if you are using a custom payment pages. I think these small annoyances can be overlooked when the product does sooo much good stuff.

    10 minutes to bend it to your will and you will have everything you need to run your ads.

    You dont even need to install it as a plugin, it is a standalone software in itself and so could run all your ads from 50 websites no problem (perhaps why it loads JQuery itself and doesnt rely on WP) from just one install of the software. Name another ad software that could help you in that way.

    For me the guys at WPMU DEV would need to build something extraordinary to get me to stop using OIO, Im not sure what they could ad that OIO doesnt already do, plus I like that if I want I cant control ads from numerous websites (and not all my websites are built using WP) from one install. Very cool.

    :smiley:

  • jdsullivan411

    +1 to David's suggestion.
    I do like OIO, however I agree with David that a more robust solution can be created and one that is managed more in-house.

    A couple of third-party apps that I'd like to see cloned into whatever you come up with are:
    isocket.com and komooda.com. I am using komooda now because isocket has an up-front monthly fee which I cannot afford on my shoestring budget, and komooda only skims off a modest payment fee. And it integrates with PayPal. And it has a moderation feature, which not only allows me to accept/reject ads, but also, if someone places an ad space that includes on-air sponsorship of our radio show, I can contact the advertiser to craft their on-air ad-copy before it runs in conjunction with the banner ads. The advertiser enters their payment info when they create their ad (they can use credit card or PayPal directly), but it is not processed until the ad is accepted. The PayPal payment processing feature is a huge selling point for me with these programs.

    Oh and also, komooda allows advertisers to upload their banner or craft one online by typing text over a template background. This is a HUGE bonus.

    One shortcoming of komooda that I see is if I wanted to split revenues with writers based on performance of their articles. Presently the only way to do it is to combine OIO with it (so that the komooda adspace appears in posts)* and then to figure out a percent of their traffic to their individual posts in relation to overall revenue, then make individual payments to writers by hand. It sure would be nice, if it could be semi-automated: writers could see the traffic to their posts, they can see the click through rate and % of the revenue they are earning (albeit this part is tricky because one never knows how much advertising revenue a site might get in any given time), but either there would have to be a set amount for a set period of time, and it could be adjusted by the admin or assigned user. Perhaps basing it off of last month's revenue would be a way to determine the amt available to all writers. When a writer hits a threshold of earnings (set by admin), the admin is notified (as well as how everyone else is doing in a listing), the admin can click a link that interfaces with PayPal with the writer's PayPal email address, a payment statement is created for the amount they've earned, the admin sends the payment, then resets the writer's balance to zero and the writer receives customization email notification of the payment.

    *A note about this, komooda only allows one ad per placement, which means rotation cannot take place. OIO might be a solution around that, but I think there can be a better way about it by having it all combined into a WPMUDEV plugin.

    As far as I know either it's isocket or koomoda, I do not remember which, allows APIs to be created. So maybe that would be a route to go if WPMU DEV didn't want to have to deal with payment processing.

  • Mark de Scande

    +1 This would rock

    If you can get this working one bug i do see is that i will have too edit ever theme to place the add code ans correct size in there well at the moment we do have Simple Ads Ps @dev it rocks

    So yes it would work it will just take a tad of time to get the add place holders in place but as soon as that is done then we can mange adds from one place for the hole site and sub sites as well as offer advertisers user sites were they can advertised :slight_smile:

    Again Just my ramblings :slight_smile: i know this will work but it will be a lot of work.

    Thank you Kindly
    Mark de Scande

  • Barry

    Hi gang

    I'm going to release an early beta of this to get some feedback on it's direction. Some of the functionality won't be complete on it because I'd really like to find out what type of things you'd find most useful - primarily with regards to reporting.

    Hopefully once you see what we've got so far you can chip in and basically say if we're heading in the right (or completely wrong) direction with this and more importantly, let us know what's missing.

    Rgds
    B