Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Ads Following Me

One thing it is easy to forget is that ten years ago most people thought advertising on the web would work completely differently than it has. The idea was that as you'd browse the web, you'd end up being tracked by cookies which would allow agencies like DoubleClick to build up a profile of your personal interests and serve up a stream of ads tailored to you, wherever you went. At the time I was doing a lot of cycling (it was that long ago) so I kept waiting to see incongruous ads for ultra-light racing wheels showing up on completely un-cycling related sites as my cue that this system was starting to work. It never happened.

What we got was a relatively simple system, dominated by Google, based around the idea that at least Google knew what each web site was about, and thus advertisers could easily buy space on relevant websites. I presume that this won because it was simpler, cheaper and more clearly aimed at the perspective of the advertiser.

So I've been interested to note that, for me, news sites like Huffington Post or LA Times have been blanketed with EVE Online ads for the past several months. Are other people seeing this, or just me? At first I thought it was a waste of their ad dollar, since I'm already paying to play the game, but on the other hand, spending a few pennies to remind current players that they want to keep playing is probably at least as efficient than just throwing ads at random people.

Anyhow, are other people seeing lots of flash ads for EVE Online, or is it just me?

1 comment:

Bill said...

I don't think it's just you - I've seen more than the usual eve ads, and I clear / reset my browser each time I use it.

Maybe ccp is fighting for the increasingly scarce recreation money?