Thursday, February 16, 2006

Tagvertising Experiment

I'm not convinced that tagvertising will work. I certainly don't think a commercial tag cloud where an entire site is simply paid tags makes much sense. I'm wondering, though, if it makes sense to have ads on TagMan. Advertisers could buy tags and their ad would be displayed during the game while someone is guessing letters. I'd want the ads to be intrusive enough to catch people's attention but not so intrusive that they'd hinder gameplay. I'm going to try an experiment. I'll upload ads from my search engine marketing clients and will track the results. This will help determine a CPM or CPC value for these sorts of ads. If the ads don't yield good results for my clients, I won't sell them to advertisers. I never planned on commercializing TagMan. This is just one of those random thoughts that materialized a couple of days ago. I might not run ads even after this experiment. Post a comment if you'd like to answer any of these questions:
  1. Would you buy ads on TagMan?
  2. What size ad would command attention but not hinder gameplay?
  3. Should ads be sold per game version (Technorati, Flickr, etc) or per tag?
  4. Should ads be sold on a CPC, CPM or fixed (perhaps monthly) fee basis?
  5. How much should I charge for ads (per tag and/or per game version)?
  6. What minimum traffic stats would a potential advertiser want to see before purchasing?
  7. Would ads somehow spoil the game?
If the ads were sold on a tag basis and advertisers purchased tags relevant to their site, the ads would have the dual benefit of serving as a hint for the game. That might be kind of cool.

Technorati tags: , , , , , , ,


Pavlos said...

Text ads on the right hand side of the game (on a sidebar perhaps), would in my opinion be best. However displaying an advertisement which is directly connected to the tag - word, would give out a lot and make game-play less exciting. Hints are not welcomed by all users. Ads that could work the best would be to products such as dictionaries, and services such as online gaming.

People tend to play TagMan more than one single time each time they visit - I assume. Thus it wouldn't be as difficult to reach the 1,000 views count. CPC and CPM would be the best choices. Perhaps you could offer advertisers an option on that. And per tag sounds preferable to per game version - that is if you really think giving exclusivity to tags would word out.

Some stats that would be useful, would include aggregate data on user's country of origin, average individual visitors and page view hits.

A way to prevent ads from interfering with game play - would be to display ads in a game results page. For instance after every game display something like a score board, relevant ads (perhaps to dictionary sites, so users can look up the word), and below that a "play again" option.

In any case I think the TagMan "commercialization" in an as less intrusive way as possible is a good idea, and I hope it works out.

8:56 AM  
Richard said...

Wow, Pavlos! Thank you very much for the detailed comment. You're right that people tend to play more than one game. It's either that or they give up before winning a game. That's why I'm thinking an ad during gameplay would be useful for advertisers. Not sure if I need to add some sort of hint feature or not. I'll post some stats shortly either here in the comments or in a new post.

5:45 PM  
Pavlos said...

You're welcome. I'd be very interested to see some stats on that. And watching how this entire venture evolves. You got me tuned in, good luck!

8:07 PM  
Richard said...

As promised, here are some stats (for Feb 1 - Feb 18):

Page Views: 15958
Games Won: 668
Unique Visitors: 1288
Page Views / Unique Visitor = 12.4
Page Views / Day = 887
Unique Visitors / Day = 72

Those Page Views are hits to any TagMan page including the FAQ. The number of visitors to the game is fairly low (72 per day) but the page views per visitor of 12.4 is good (from the point of view of potential advertisers). Makes sense since each guess of a letter is a page view.

Here's a breakdown of the 668 games won by version:
Flickr: 262
Technorati: 202 118
Squidoo: 86
Interesting that the Flickr game seems to be the most popular.

10:35 PM  
Pavlos said...

Very interesting, thanks for sharing. I can understand flickr being the most popular. I just played a game, and was lucky enough to discover the tag "hawaii" which displays a bunch of beautiful photos from Hawaii.

What is it they say.. "a picture is a thousand words"? I agree.

72 unique visitor a day is pretty good for something that hasn't been around much time and hasn't been advertised much either. I'm sure the more people find out about the TagMan, word of mouth will work wonders.

5:04 PM  

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