Quigo Abandons Keywords For Matching Content
Contextual marketing rose to the fore as the search craze hit its peak. Founded on the very same bid-model principles as search, contextual marketing ran into some early hiccups related to scale, relevancy, and advertiser control. Also, contextual campaigns weren't providing advertisers with the same results they were getting from search.
Search firm Quigo Technologies, which originally entered the space as the technology firm behind Overture's ContentMatch, has decided to tweak the existing bid-model somewhat and bring the contextual marketing platform back to what it's really about: vertical categories.
Its new product, called AdSonar, is a pay-per-click contextual marketing network that foregoes keyword bidding for old-fashioned vertical segments.
At the outset, AdSonar advertisers pick from one of three verticals: education, travel, and health & fitness. Within each vertical, there are 1,000 additional topics. Once advertisers register a description of their product, an algorithm matches the description to a list of possible subtopics, which advertisers can then pick and choose as being relevant. The minimum bid price is displayed alongside each subtopic.
Quigo CEO Michael Yavonditte notes that one of the reasons for the change from the keyword bid-model back to a topic-based model is that content on the Internet changes every day, so contextual relevancy one day could be very different on another day, which he says makes category targeting more efficient than keyword targeting.
However, with AdSonar, advertisers have control over the topics related to their products, but they have no control over the publishers they advertise with. Advertiser control has been pinpointed as one of the chief drawbacks of bid-model contextual and search marketing campaigns. Quigo CEO Michael Yavonditte says AdSonar provides advertisers with enough relevancy to eliminate the need for control.
Yavonditte says that it also detracts from their scale to let advertisers pick and choose their publishers. "It becomes really hard, almost technologically impossible, to allow 50,000 advertisers [to] pick and choose from 200 publishers," he adds.
Yavonditte says that Priceline is the only major advertiser that they are allowed to announce; however, he says that their advertiser roster will include national as well as Internet brands. With Quigo, advertisers still write their own text ads, but they have the option to let Quigo write titles and descriptions for them, through another product called FeedPoint.
"We've created our own 'mini AdSense'--but within the travel, health and fitness, and education sectors," Yaonditte adds, but notes that there are less relevancy problems because it is category-based, not keyword-based.
Yavonditte adds that Quigo also plans to roll out traffic analytics for its advertising partners in the near future.