The online adult entertainment industry has changed considerably from what it was in the late 1990s or early 2000s. Adult tube sites are plentiful, membership websites aren’t as prominent as they once were, live webcam platforms have exploded in popularity, and more and more consumers are accessing adult sites on smartphones and other mobile devices.
In this new, ever-changing landscape, many online adult companies are seeing the benefits of using ad networks. And in 2016, a variety of cutting-edge technology is available that can benefit advertisers as well as publishers.
Buy a quality tracking software to give you detailed reporting on your sales funnels, there are three or four very good ones on the market now. -Ross Allan, TrafficForce
According to Ross Allan, advertising manager for TrafficForce, having top-notch tracking software is vital with online adult advertising.
“Buy a quality tracking software to give you detailed reporting on your sales funnels,” Allan told XBIZ. “There are three or four very good ones on the market now. Personally, I recommend itsup.com. The guys who built it have been doing affiliate marketing for more than 12 years and understand what is needed to grow your business. Learn how to use it.
“Don’t be afraid to ask the technical team for advice on setup — a lot of users struggle for weeks with their systems when they have experts available and ready to help them out. A/B testing is crucial in online advertising; all traffic reacts differently to different products. What works on one site may not work on another. So testing landing pages, banners, sales text, design colors is all a crucial part of getting your online advertising profitable.”
Rocco Bruzzese, sales manager for the Montreal-based AdXpansion, cited server-to-server technology as a tool that has multiple benefits for online adult advertising.
Bruzzese told XBIZ, “The S2S service allows you to track and record conversions. In our platform, the main benefits of that service are: you can track conversions from almost any environment, client and server. You can control when to track the conversion — i.e., when a sale is validated. Conversions stats are accessible in your AdXpansion reports, and you can track multiple conversion steps to optimize your campaigns.”
Mark Bauman, CEO of TrafficHaus, noted that while ad blocking software can be problematic for adult advertising, innovators in the adult industry are addressing that challenge with technological solutions of their own.
Bauman told XBIZ: “In 2016, we are dealing with a lot of emerging technologies which are countering the last few years’ big growth of the now dominant distribution platforms, tube sites. Not only are we seeing increases of new TLDs and domains, but we are seeing increased use of Pinterest-style adult sites, which provide a clean image and video distribution model. However, these new emerging sites are not a real problem.
“The real issue in 2016 is ad blockers,” he said. “Ad blockers now make up 21 percent of all Internet website users, 6-8 percent of all mobile website users. What that means is that all online websites have lost 29 percent of their revenue. On top of that, they are still incurring the server costs it takes to service those users.”
Bauman continued: “Ad networks need to evolve, they need to combat this problem head on. We have done so with our new technology, ReviveAds. We provide publishers the ability to work around these ad blockers and revive that revenue that’s lost. Other ad networks similar to TrafficHaus need to follow suit or utilize our technology. We are currently the only ad network in the world capable of serving this through our real-time bidding platform.”
Programmatic technology is making its presence felt not only in mainstream advertising, but in adult advertising as well.
In a group statement, the ad network Reporo told XBIZ, “The emergence of the need to buy traffic programmatically, as is common in mainstream, has altered our own business significantly. Such is the fast pace of the evolution. We can now see adult versions of DSPs, demand side platforms, and (we) even met one innovator building a DMP: data management platform. Reporo runs certain elements of this already, but is set to launch its own leading technology in RTB and programmatic offering imminently.”
Giles Hirst, marketing and communications manager for ExoClick, noted that mobile features are a high priority for the Barcelona-based ad network this year.
Hirst told XBIZ: “2015 was the year of mobile, so 2016 will be the year of innovation in ways of exploiting this platform.”
“ExoClick has already been innovating in this area by providing new mobile ad formats such as our in-app Android SDK, worldwide carrier targeting and device targeting,” he said. “Retargeting on mobile is now extremely important, and our platform allows retargeting on search engines and other ad networks using ExoClick’s single pixel. On the business side, we have tied up exclusive mobile publisher traffic deals that are not available on other networks.”
Hirst also described the benefits of ExoClick’s smartCPM technology, saying, “Real-time bidding innovation comes from our smartCPM option, which bids for you at the best price possible. Just set the maximum CPM bid you want to pay, and then, our system will bid for you 24/7. The system determines the lowest price you must pay to get the best position in the rotation of the campaigns up until your maximum bid price. Used wisely, smartCPM is a great tool since it saves time and guarantees the best visibility at the most affordable price.”
American sales manager for the Netherlands-based adult ad network EroAdvertising, cited Ero’s Source Optimizer (released in late 2015) as a valuable tool for adult advertising.
Adams told XBIZ: “The best advice I would give is to know your audience and your product inside out. With the amount of audience segmenting now available, it is in the advertiser’s best interest to use it.
“However, if you are new to the game, I strongly suggest using EroAdvertising’s tracking and Source Optimizer so you can start out with a broad RON campaign and use technology to quickly narrow down what traffic is meeting your pre-selected conversion ratios,” she said. “Source Optimizer will automatically turn off traffic sources that are not meeting your ratios. Once an advertiser has narrowed down the traffic, they can buy direct from the converting sites.”
Juicy Jay, founder and CEO of the ad network JuicyAds, pointed to his company’s program SexyTechnology as a way to intensify conversions.
Jay told XBIZ: “I’m proud to say that over a year ago, we launched SexyTechnology — a profits booster that improves engagement and conversions.”
“We also relaunched some of our auto-optimization tools that were originally available years ago,” he said. “It seems some of these innovations have now found their way into other advertising networks even though our clients have had these advantages for quite some time. The good news is: our new variants of SexyTechnology and our other technologies will continue to evolve this year.”