Collective Media Debuts Performance-Based Network

As if direct marketers needed another ad network to choose from, ad network and technology provider Collective Media today is expected to unveil its own performance-based ad network--Directive Network.

The company's CEO, Joe Apprendi, however, is confident that the new Directive Network will stand out among the more than 200 such networks saturating the market today.

"Unlike a lot of other ad networks, our top priority is full transparency," said Apprendi. "Direct marketers don't have to compromise transparency and quality content in exchange for more affordable pricing."

The Directive Network relies on the company's audience targeting and optimization tools to pair flexible pricing options with high content standards. Personifi, Collective Media's semantic content classification technology, pre-screens all Web sites and pages available to sniff out inappropriate content.

In addition, Apprendi prides himself on the fact that the Directive Network does not buy from or sell to other ad networks, and that it is made up exclusively of comScore 1,000 ad-supported publishers--50% of which it claims to have already partnered with.

Said Karsten Weide, an analyst with IDC: "Any step advertising networks take to increase the quality of their inventory, such as limiting the sources to top 1,000 sites, will make them even more competitive."

Still, the comScore 1,000 doesn't absolutely guarantee quality, according to Forrester Research analyst Barry Parr. "It's actually a pretty mixed bag of publishers," he said.

And while Parr was not briefed on The Direct Network specifically, he is wary of the explosion in ad networks in general. "My sense is that whenever possible, publishers would like a direct relationship with advertisers," he said.

Directive Network will operate as a stand-alone business unit with its own sales and support services, according to Apprendi.

Founded in 2005, Collective Media presently operates the Collective Network, a premium display advertising network; AMP, its proprietary ad network management platform; and Personifi, its semantic content classification and audience targeting solution.

The New York-based company also has offices in Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit, Los Angeles and San Francisco.

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