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Small Publishers Need To Embrace RTB - And Become A Publisher Partner?

Jeff Green (founder and CEO of The Trade Desk, Inc.) from within his RTBinsider article @ MediaPost today asks the question of Publishers "What's the best way to monetize ad inventory?" - and he almost begs of publishers to make peace with the fact that exchanges are here to stay-that publishers should also make peace with RTB as well.

Of Exchanges Jeff writes, that a good market decreases the friction in transactions and increases demand, as the number of advertisers in RTB increases, a publisher is going to:

1) like the bid it sees;
2) like the fact that even a small advertiser is expressing this much tenacity in trying to obtain its inventory.

Inventory (Audience?) or, each Individual Impression?

Jeff then introduces that word 'target', and that:

"Smaller advertisers in small U.S. cities know exactly who they want to target and will bid accordingly. .....There are millions of advertisers like this. And the sales forces at most premium publishers would never have called on them directly. Demand from exchanges represents the only path most publishers have to this demand."

But what of publishers as being part of a global marketplace that allows advertisers (in real time), to target and follow users showing search intent-no matter where that user next lands, within that marketplace?

Where those smaller self-serve advertisers 'local to' a targeted user (and NOT just in small U.S. cities -- from within a global marketplace), then get to line up against the big brands on an equal footing to blindly bid against each other-for that (each and every) individual impression.

And a Marketplace that would include both the Yahoo and Google publisher partners wouldn't be such a bad start, many would agree?

Smaller publishers may well have a need to 'join' up with a network and in doing so-would then see mostly all their impressions (eCPM's & CPC) monetised, no matter where on the web a visitor may come to them from.

In regards to 'search intent' and a marketplace publisher 'base'-in the linked story above, the Vice President of the Distribution Network for LookSmart said - back in August, 2011:

...."we have about 3 billion queries per day includes explicit search (search traffic) domains traffic, E Mail, 'in text' as well- close to 4000 odd publishers-focusing on quality"

Now Facebook is generating a lot of buzz this week after announcing a mystery press conference scheduled for next Tuesday. What if Facebook announced a kind of PPC Product/Service Listings to it's existing search?

(Mark Zuckerberg has previously alluded to a need for Facebook to have a more robust search product - a site search service that already receives a billion queries per day, mostly for people looking for friends.)

And search could be the next money making venture, Dan Niles, the CIO of Alpha One capital partners said.

"The thing that I'm waiting for is when do they get into search. And it's not going to surprise me that if sometime in 2013, they get into the search business. And that's going to be another big driver," Niles said.

Were Facebook to join with Google and Yahoo (Bing et al?) and actually become part of Looksmart's 'search intent' marketplace, would really be such a blessing for Looksmart's shareholders.

As a publisher (already with a billion queries per day), there's so much more revenue potential for Facebook than 'you could poke a stick at'!

Should Facebook 'go the whole hog' (on Tuesday) and announce it's own ad network- it's own advertisers could then get to partake in the RTB 'user intent' auction being held out-side of Facebook & get to find a targeted user, on Facebook. (A 'win' on both sides, for Facebook.)

Always, only an opinion.

LOOK: $0.86 Up 0.02 (+2.38%) 3:47PM EST


Disclosure: Long LOOK