For Glam Media, Page Is Canvas for Super-Premium Real-Time Ads
Glam Media launched with half-page ad units with rich media reminiscent of print back in 2005, and has been in the native advertising business since before the term was coined. “We were one of the first in the industry to actually start creating ways for brand advertisers not only to advertise via standard IAB ad units, but build a technology platform to actually have either content, or content with product placements, or full advertorials in the content and social feeds,” Arora says.
Glam is the No. 1 lifestyle publisher worldwide and a Top 7 Web property according to comScore, reaching about 90 million monthly unique visitors in the United States, and about 240 million globally. Led by former executives from Apple and print and TV media, the company has taken an unusual approach to advertising for a media company. Rather than using existing technology platforms, the publisher has built out its entire rich-media ad stack internally— a substantial investment.
For RTB, Glam Media is focused on super-premium ad units. “Our core business has always been super premium, and we've built a private RTB exchange to connect directly with brands and with their media agencies for premium brand-specific, custom RTB,” explains Arora.
Unlike many media companies, which will run a few uncoordinated ads on a page because each ad call is unique to the ad server, Glam thinks about the page as an entire canvas. “A canvas to us means all of the content on the page and all the ads on the page,” remarks Arora.
The company’s approach is to think like an editor-in-chief of a magazine, with the goal to create a good consumer experience. “I believe advertising is very desirable when packaged carefully with the right context. Also, this approach isn’t limited to targeting just women; it’s very effective to reach both men and women,” notes Arora. “An example I use is, if you are looking at a Scuba Diving magazine or a Cigar Aficionado, both the content and ads are relevant.”
Finally, says Arora, “Using the page as a large canvas for content and social, and packaging content with high-impact native advertising provides the platform where brands can deliver the deep engagement they are seeking.”