Text ads, served by Microsoft were spotted on Digg yesterday. JenSense did a nice job of getting under the covers and pulling out the code. We also appreciate her comments about the formatting of the ads .
While we wouldn’t be too critical of the contextual matching, we do think that the formatting of the ads could certainly be improved. After all, that’s our business.
If you look at the code a little more closely, there appears to be only one formatting setting at this point for the ad size.
</div><div class=”permalink-wrap”><div id=”contents”>
<div class=”sidebar-short”><div id=”item_ad_msft”
We tried to get the ads to come up on Digg, but didn’t get any. It’s possible that they’re specifying the formatting server-side during provisioning which is then tied back to each ad via the location naming (“top_ad_msft”, “item_ad_msft”). This leaves the door open to more sophisticated formatting down the road. In some ways this may be a more future-proof approach.
In order to get a better sense of whether we are giving our friends at MSN too much credit, we sampled the link color in the screenshots on Jen’s blog. They don’t match, but that could be because they were saved as a gif, so the palette might have been changed from the original color. We’d need to see such an ad in the wild to be sure.
So at this point we’d tentatively agree with the assessment that no formatting is being applied to these ads other than size.
This entry was posted on Friday, October 12th, 2007 at 9:28 am and is filed under Online Advertising. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.