Maximizing The Yield Curve


As a publisher, maximizing your revenue yield should be a constant theme. Every day I hear from publishers and members of my team, “how do I get higher CPMs?” High CPMs(revenue per 1000 impressions) is a concern for all online publishers large and small. I think it is the common denominator for conversations among all publishers and advertisers.

There is an ever present theme in our daily lives when we are ready to engage in exchange, “How much to I have to give in order to get.” In the case of online advertising, how much are advertisers(brands) willing to pay you(the publisher) to smack a banner ad across your content. As a publisher you want maximum dollars flowing to you for each impression you allow on your content. Advertisers want to spend only the minimum amount to see a return(product purchase, brand lift, etc). With a nearly unlimited market of supply(impressions requests by publishers) and a finite dollar amount(brand advertising budgets), the brands(demand) will follow the economic law of diminishing returns and spend less and less for each additional ad impression across your content. As a publisher you have a choice to continue to sell at a lower rate thus maintaing market efficiency or closing the market, ie making your content no longer available to advertisers.

Below is a sample of a publisher’s revenue yield curve. On the right side are highdollar CPMs(y-axis) but a low quantity of impressions served(x-axis). As you move along the curve, the CPMs fall and the quantity of ads served increases. This is not atypical for any publisher that maximizes the revenue across their content.

As a publisher there are several questions that remain in order to maximize revenue and push the belly of the curve up and to the right:

  • How do I slow the rate of diminishing returns?
  • When do I stop selling my advertising on my content?

I analyze these questions every day for the publishers in the Federated Mediaexchange. There are several techniques but the most significant driver to decreasing your revenue delta is a robust ad partner(demand) structure. The demand market is limited but there are solutions available to you. As an exampleI,your site receives 1,000,000 ad requests per month and one advertiser(scenario one) has offered to buy all of your impressions for the month. They agree to pay you $5CPM for the first 100,000 impression then $2.50 for the next 150,000, $1.00 for the next 250,000 and finally $0.50 for the remaining 500,000. Now imagine your savvy sales development skills landed a second advertiser for you the next month. They agree to pay you the same amount as advertiser one keeping in mind that your number of available impressions is constant at 1,000,000 for the month. Can you see what is happening here? You have have to advertisers buying your content for the same rates and the same quantities. Good stuff for sure. Now let’s look at the impact of your additional sale.

  • Revenue is up by 63%
  • Your lowest value ad inventory is now priced at $1.00, not $0.50

This brings me to the topic at hand, by using two partners you improved your revenue yield. Did you reach the maximum? Impossible to tell. You would need to add additional advertisers until you found a diminishing rate of return.

The above scenario is a bit simplified but my point is that as a publisher you should focus on increasing your revenue yield by maximizing the return from each ad partner. High CPMs, like winning streaks are great but eventually all begins to normalize. This leads to the second question of when do you stop selling your content. There is no easy answer for this as each publisher is different. The rule I like to follow is if you don’t receive an incremental or noticeable bump in your revenue then you have likely reached the point on your yield curve where selling more content space is not going to lead deliver noticeable returns.

I hope this helps provide you with a better understanding of the market dynamics that are at play. I will continue to write about this topic as it resonates daily with me. Post comments and I will do what I can to answer.

This article was originally published on Matthew Barrowclough is the Director of our Publisher Management Group and currently oversees publisher revenue growth for our network. You will usually find him grinding away with spreadsheets and surfacing additional revenue yield for each publisher.

How-to: Ad-Chains


When determining the right advertising strategy for your site, implementing an ad chain can be a great solution to optimize earning potential and achieve 100% fill.  In the following how-to video, Lijit Publisher Development member Grayson Braswell walks you through all the components of an ad chain.

4th Annual Foodbuzz Blogger Festival!


Calling all food bloggers!  The time has come for the 4th annual Foodbuzz Blogger Festival in San Francisco. On behalf of our friends at Dailybuzz Food, we would like to invite you to a weekend of eating, classes, tastings, demos, and more eating. The weekend will be filled with the best of the best in food and drinks, our favorite bloggers, and good times to be had by all.

The festivities will be taking place October 19-20. You can go ahead and check out the full agenda here. As a Lijit publisher, you’re eligible to attend the festival for just $30. Get your tickets here or email for more information.

This is sure to be a great event. Come hungry, and we look forward to seeing you all there!

Dont be late, your audience is waiting!


Timing is everything and knowledge is power. Content is not king if there’s no one there to read it. Understanding your audience and the importance of timing are fundamental to blogging success.

As a blogger, you need to know exactly who your audience is and their habits online. Use what you know about your readership to fit into their day-to-day schedule. Think about what they are doing at certain times of the day and how it reflects on their time spent online. Leverage this knowledge to grow your readership and drive more traffic to your site.

Let’s imagine you’re a food blogger and your target audience comprises of moms like Alice, a 38-year-old mom of 3. On a week day morning, Alice sips on coffee and surfs the web for quick and easy dinner recipes in-between dropping her kids off at school and yoga. Too bad you didn’t do your research and submit your blog post “delish din in 10 min” until 2pm in the afternoon. On the fly, Alice took the kids for fast food after their soccer game and you missed out on catching the eye of a huge influencer. Had you known that your blog caters heavily to busy moms with me-time in the morning, you could have timed your post appropriately to reach Alice on time. Instead, you missed out on Alice seeing your blog post, taking action from it, and sharing it with family and friends both off and online.

Proof is in the pudding. Just check out these general stats from our friends over at KISSmetrics in their blogging series: Timing and Blogging.

* Note: the data below is presented in Eastern Time (EST)

While general stats, such as these, are certainly enlightening, it’s also important to do some digging of your own to really zero in on your unique audience. To do this, use your customized analytics to see when readers are most often on your site and use that information to schedule publishing, tweeting, Facebook updates and more. Be sure to consider time zones as well – four hours can be a huge difference in someone’s day.

Bottom line, timing is key. Harness the power of your research and your instinct so that you know when and where your audience is online. Build a strategy with this knowledge in mind and adapt it in a way that aligns with their schedule and routine. Organically, you will ramp up page views, saturate more of the social sphere, and ultimately, become a more successful blogger.

Check out MediaPass!


At Lijit, we’re always looking for the best ways for you to monetize your website.  We’ve recently gotten to know an exciting company called MediaPass that gives publishers like you the ability to supplement your advertising revenue by converting some of your free users into paid subscribers. Created by experts in online subscriptions, MediaPass allows you to sell subscriptions to your content without the complexity or resource demands associated with building and managing the process yourself. Thousands of blogs, newspapers, magazines and other content sites use MediaPass as their digital subscription and paywall solution.

MediaPass makes it easy and delivers results:

  • Live in minutes: It’s so easy that MediaPass has been called “AdSense for online subscriptions” by the Nieman Lab at Harvard.
  • Huge ad revenue supplement: MediaPass’ average publisher is enjoying an effective RPM of $130 on their premium subscription pages.
  • No upfront costs: MediaPass doesn’t make any money unless you do, and will quickly send you payments for your subscription revenue.
  • No strings: Try MediaPass for free with no commitments or exclusivity requirements.  There’s no reason to not try MediaPass – that’s why we like them!

Find out why MediaPass is also the only subscription solution officially certified by and the only one they offer to their VIP publishers – just sign up for an account and you can be live testing in minutes.

5 Reasons Why Your Blog Needs Analytics


Monta Fleming is a Lijit Publisher that utilizes our analytics tools. Read on to learn about the importance of analytics for the success of your site!

When running a blog, there are a number of different tools and strategies that you can use to make it run more effectively. One of the tools that you should probably implement on your blog is analytics. With analytics, you can realize a number of benefits that you won’t be able to get otherwise. Here are a few of the reasons that you need to put analytics on your blog.

1. Finding out Who Your Readers Are

One reason that you may want to put analytics on your blog is so that you can figure out who is actually reading it. When you set up analytics, you’ll be able to tell where your traffic is coming from and see who is checking out your blog the most. For example, you could find out if the majority of your readers are male or female. You could find out how old your readership is, and whether they are educated. This information can be extremely valuable when it comes to tailoring the future content for your site.

2. Finding Out Hot Topics

When running a blog, it is essential to make sure that the content you create is interesting to your readers. With analytics, you’ll be able to find which topics are the hottest, so that you can delve into them deeper. If you don’t ever take the time to figure out which topics your visitors like, you may end up driving some of them away by the future content that you make. You can see which pages on your site are visited the most, which ones get the most repeat visitors, and how long people are staying on the pages.

3. Uncovering Trends

When you use analytics, you can also uncover trends that may be emerging. If you want to be successful at blogging, you have to be able to correctly identify trends, and then get in on the front end of them. If you can position yourself in front of a trend, you stand to generate a large amount of traffic and followers in the future. For example, if you notice that some section of your site is becoming more popular than all of the others, you can build more content and feature that section more prominently. This can go a long way toward helping you boost the profile of your blog in the long-term.

4. Measure SEO Efforts

Many people who are involved in creating blogs also engage in search engine optimization. With search engine optimization, you can boost your profile in the eyes of the search engines and generate more traffic for free. There are a lot of different things that you can do for SEO like link building and writing content based around keywords. If you are interested to see how your search engine optimization efforts are paying off, you need to implement analytics. This will show you how much of your traffic is coming from the search engines, and what keywords are bringing them there.

5. Improve Site Performance

With the information that you can get from analytics, you can make changes to your site that will directly improve its performance. For example, Google uses over 200 different variables to determine how your site ranks in the search engines. One of them is the bounce rate of your pages. If your pages have a high bounce rate, this indicates that the quality may not be very good. Use this information to help your site rank better.

By implementing analytics, you can get all kinds of information that you can use to your benefit. Play around with the analytics solution that you choose to make sure that you understand how it works.

Monta the mother of three children serves as an Expert Advisor on multiple household help issues to many Organizations and groups, and is a mentor for other “Mom-preneurs” seeking guidance.  She is a regular contributor of “”.  You can get in touch with her at montafleming6Atgmail dotcom.

How Google’s AdSense Policy Changes will Affect Online Publishers


Lijit Networks is always staying up to date with industry trends, and we like to make sure that our publishers remain informed as well. Recently, Google altered their AdSense Program Policy stating that as of August 15th AdSense publishers are no longer allowed to install tags using iFrames.

As a Lijit publisher, there is no need to worry about these changes; we’ve got you covered. We are aware of Google’s updated policy and have made the necessary technical changes to comply with their ad serving guidelines.  If you currently utilize Lijit in conjunction with AdSense, rest assured that Lijit will continue providing you with high quality ad campaigns.

Why does Lijit provide the option of iFrames? As an online publisher, page load time is an extremely important factor. Choosing the right ad network is critical to ensure that your pages load quickly.  A great solution for Lijit publishers with regard to installing ad tags on their site is utilizing iFrames. With iFrames, advertisements load separately from the actual web page and therefore do not affect site load time.

Lijit will continue to offer the option of iFrames to our publishers. If you do not currently utilize Lijit advertising services and will be affected by Google’s changes, or if you would just like to learn more about what we provide, check out our site or contact us directly. We would love to work with you and can get you up and running super fast!

Lijit Publishers: Go Ahead, Submit For The OMMA Awards!


The annual OMMA awards will be taking place in New York on October 1, 2012. The awards honor outstanding creativity in online advertising but there are great opportunities for publishers as well. For those who don’t know, OMMA is MediaPost’s magazine of Online Media, Marketing and Advertising.

We wanted to share with our Lijit Publishers the array of award opportunities that fall within the category Website Excellence. This category is meant for web publishers and/or web developers whose outstanding content, visual design and user interface create recurring value for publishers.

As a Lijit Publisher, you are highly conversational, service a niche audience, and provide original content frequently.  Why not win an award for your awesome efforts?

Here is a list of the categories and the deadline to apply is August 10th. Good Luck!

Publisher Spotlight: Global Good Group


We had a chance to sit down and talk with Rick Jeffries and Josh Bois, the founders of Global Good Group, to gather some tips and tricks for building a site that has more than one million readers a month in over 200 countries. Global Good Group’s main goal is to promote global good by connecting people, information, businesses, and governments. The Global Good Group leverages the Internet as well as social media outlets to help make positive change happen.

Where did the Global Good Group get their start?

Initially it began in 2008 when we formed our parent company, Chains For Change LLC, with the simple purpose of connecting artists together.  Since the beginning it has always been a joint partnership between the two of us. We promoted and utilized our artwork and talents to reach a bigger audience while keeping focus on the aspect of global good. Eventually, the Global Good Network was created. We have 150 writers and contributors that have joined us over time. As we have grown, we have remained very humble and make sure that we maintain focus on the writings that we put forth.

How do you make sure that your content remains relevant to your readers?

We did things a little backwards. From the beginning, we said that we would never limit the content that we would write about, and by doing this, our site began to segment itself into different categories so no matter what we wrote about, there would be a niche place for it. Content is curated from writers from all over the world, and everything has a category that it falls in to.

How do you utilize social media outlets to grow your business?

Did you know that there are 125 social media networks around the world? We set up an account with every social media network that existed. We realized that there is more than just Facebook and Twitter, and we wanted to make sure we were utilizing everything we could.  We didn’t want readers from other countries to have to sign up for social media sites not relevant to them in order to connect with us. We plugged ourselves in from the get go so we could work with people all over the world on their own sites in their own terms.  Even though some of the smaller social media outlets only provide us with 2% of traffic to our site, they are still important to us and we will not cut them loose.

What are some cool stories that have come from embarking on this endeavor?

Whether it has been celebrities, political figures, or people who have their own spears of influence, we have been able to build a huge reach. The more content we put out, the more people want to get involved. This process has created countless good stories.  We take pride in the people that we work with as well as the progress and credibility that they bring to the table. During the Casey Anthony trial, we partnered up with Clint House to bring awareness to Caylee. We started a blog called Caylee over Casey and helped contribute to the passing of Caylee’s Law. We wanted to put this legislation in place to stop something like what happened to Caylee from ever happening again.

What are some tips you have for young bloggers looking to make it big like yourselves?

This is an endeavor that definitely needs to be tended to a lot, in a positive way. Doing what we did became an addiction for all of us. We wanted to continue to put out more and more content and we needed to start increasing our writer base and contributor base organically to do so. Lijit has been very helpful in that we have been working with the company from the ground up. Sometimes tending to your website can be a burden, but over time you learn to create different systems and routines that allow you to continually put out solid content.

What keeps you going?

We believe that the world is actually coming to a point where there is value in helping your fellow brother and fellow sister because we can all excel at what we do without conflicting with one another. Working together is what gets things going. Maintaining the idea of doing global good will resonate with people.

Special Thanks To:

Sandi Bois, Bev Singh, Ana Pischl, Megan Klein, Albert Qian, Jo Turnbull, NuFit Studio, Tariq Houston,  Xango Henry, Chiddy Graphics, Ian Hafkenschiel, Derek DeLang, HK, Keisha Wilson, Gary and Sheri Wells Brooks.

Lijit Publisher Insight-Survey Round up


Lijit recently conducted a survey of our publishers to determine the kind of information and education that helps them better engage their audience and monetize their website. We received almost 400 survey responses – 50% of respondents said they wrote as their full-time job, and 50% said they wrote for fun. A special thanks to all of the publishers who participated!

Do you agree with the findings outlined below?

How do you gather your information? There is an abundance of information in the market to help online publishers learn how to do their job better.  When asked how they gather the most relevant information, Lijit publishers stated that blog posts were most beneficial, followed by social media outlets like Twitter and word of mouth (e.g. recommendations from a friend).

What information is most relevant to you? As an online publisher, there is always more to learn, as well as knowledge to be shared. When we asked Lijit Publishers what information is most relevant to them, learning how to create better, more engaging content was ranked number one, followed by information on how to best monetize their site.

What stats are most beneficial to you? Lijit’s free audience analytics tools provide publishers with an array of data to help them grow their site – everything from audience analytics, to reader engagement statistics to advertiser insights. Of all the statistics we have available, publishers are most interested in audience analytics, which provides them with a better understanding of the demographics of their readers, page views, referring sites, referring search terms, and sites that are linking to their website.

Do you attend any industry events? It turns out that Lijit publishers find most of their information online and rarely attend industry events.  While 78.5% of Lijit publishers stated that they do not attend industry events, for those that do BlogWorld and ad:tech are most highly attended with 16% and 7.1% attendance respectively.