> News > 2004
> How has Internet advertising changed over
the past 5 years. . .
How has Internet
advertising changed over the past 5 years, and
where will it go in the future?
( nPost.com interview with Roy de Souza )
By Nathan Kaiser
nPost: Can you give us an introduction
Roy: Zedo provides the tools
and services that enable people to make money
out of Internet advertising. Founded in 1999,
we are currently profitable and growing.
nPost: What is the origin of
Roy: We came about with the development
of our superior technology. That has a huge impact
on the cost structure that we are able to offer
customers. The real differentiator for us is that
we offer a very high level of service. Since our
costs are so low we are able to offer outstanding
customer service at the same price as other providers.
nPost: What differentiates your
Roy: It is much more scalable,
much simpler architecture, high-speed delivery
and a low cost. Our technology allows the browser
to connect to a server to and get the ad back
much faster. We don't rely on hundreds of central
servers instead we have a distributed architecture.
nPost: What is provided by your
Roy: We offer 24-hour support,
product customization, service flexibility, etc.
The Internet is a very flexible place and the
more you can help your advertisers make money
the more valuable your service becomes.
nPost: Has the market requested
this higher level of support?
Roy: Both a high level of support
as well as a high level of technology. If everyone
buys exactly the same kind of ad at exactly the
same price, then the market price for that advertising
is high. If everyone does something slightly different
then you can potentially buy good quality ad space
at a lower price.
nPost: How has the market changed
since Zedo was founded in 1999?
Roy: Primarily two things happened.
One is that the ads became much bigger and more
intrusive to the visitors on different sites.
The other is that the advertising types fragmented.
In 1999, sites only utilized one type of ad, a
banner ad. Now they use larger and much more intrusive
ads. They also use a much wider array of ads.
nPost: How has the change in
the market place affected your business?
Roy: It means that every customer
needs something slightly different. Every customer
needs services and technologies that allow them
to differentiate from their competitors. Their
need for additional support and customization
tools has forced our organization to provide new
features and services to meet those growing needs.
nPost: How have you gone about
offering that spectrum of services?
Roy: We have a great technology
and a great team. Also, our low cost structure
has allowed us to be flexible and to grow our
services faster than other competitors.
nPost: What contributes to your
low cost structure?
Roy: Our development center is
in India, which allows us to keep our costs low.
They are open 24 hours a day, and their expertise
has been instrumental in our success.
nPost: What responses have you
seen to pop-ups as well as pop-unders in the market
Roy: Pop-ups are not a very effective
marketing tool, because they tend to small as
you can't block too much of the site, they also
tend to be closed very quickly, and because of
that they tend not to load at all. Pop-unders
are only slightly less annoying. They are much
more effective as a marketing tool, because they
are very large, load fully by the time they are
seen, and have much more interesting creative.
nPost: Will both ad types continue
to be used?
Roy: While pop-unders tend to
be effective, both advertising types will disappear.
Publishers and advertisers will react to visitor’s
feedback and discontinue these over time.
nPost: How has keyword advertising
affected your business?
Roy: The explosion of paid search
and inclusion show what an effective advertising
medium the Internet truly is. There are a lot
of different ways for advertisers to present their
products to the public. Paid search is very effective
because the user told you what they wanted to
look for. It is a much easier way to target and
provides an easy way to purchase direct advertising.
nPost: How has paid search and
inclusion affected advertising?
Roy: It has revitalized the entire
industry. It has shown everyone that Internet
advertising really works. Even branding companies
who don't do keyword search have seen the success
stories of paid search and inclusion.
nPost: Do you see companies
spending a greater amount of their ad budget online?
Roy: Currently companies spend
5-8% of their ad budgets online and we see that
proportion increasing. One recent trend is that
publishers are looking to utilize more rich media
than in the past. We are finding that a lot of
our customers are looking to use rich media, which
are very large ads that are within the content
of the site.
nPost: How many of your advertisers
and publishers are using rich media?
Roy: Well, there isn't much of
an impact when one advertiser uses rich media.
It is when a publisher begins to use them, because
then every visitor to the site sees that type
of ad. That is one of the biggest trends we are
seeing. Rich media is also very attractive to
nPost: What to advertisers need
to do to continue to differentiate their products
Roy: With the rich media format,
advertisers have been given a very large canvas
on which to create. Also, consumers will see rich
media ads as they are placed within the overall
content of a site. When we get to the point where
an ad is sure to be seen for 5 to 10 seconds,
then a lot of creativity is handed back to the
advertiser. Independent of ad type, advertisers
have to ensure that their ads are creative and
speak to their target market.
nPost: What are the keys to
Roy: A dedicated focus on our
customer's needs and a very good team.