Tuesday, July 03, 2007


Yahoo is doing some new kind of customized ads:

Yahoo will announce new tools for online advertising today that could pull the company ahead in the race for what is called “behavioral targeting,” that is, the ability to better tailor online advertisements to the people most likely to buy.

Just out of curiosity, would anyone be willing to tell advertisers exactly what they're looking for? I would. Sometimes. This is something I've thought about a lot, but any major advertiser could put together an app overnight and deploy it to their network the next day.

Basically, I want to allow people to decide what types of ads they're shown, at least part of the time. Instead of asking your computers to mind-read what web surfers are thinking and feeling, why not just let the web surfers tell advertisers exactly what they're thinking and feeling? Both parties win.

So, for instance, if I decide I kinda want to think about checking out new cars - just to gauge my own level of commitment, I could tell Google that I want to see new car ads - lots of them - because i just *might* be in the market for a car. I get to see ads for all the new cars on the market and car manufacturers get to pimp their rides to me. Seems simple enough, no?

...adding, the difference here would be that this is passive advertising. Google has no idea right now that I just had my car worked on twice and that it cost me a certain amount of time/money/heartache. I and I alone am in the best position to determine what my level of interest in a new car is. In fact, I could have used some help from advertising to pick out a repair shop. Google had no idea that my car was making some odd noises, one of which was getting progressively worse. As the noise got worse, I could go to my ad profile and ratchet up the level of 'car fixiness' in the ads I wanted to see.

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