Advertising on the Internet
Advertising on the Internet (Second Edition)
Robin Zeff & Brad Aronson
John Wiley and Sons Publishing
Reviewed by Paul Garbutt
Targeting the right customer with the right ad at the right time
is a marketer's dream and this book shows how and why this has become
a mantra for online advertisers.
Customization and personalisation are possible to a degree that
is almost scary, with current technology. Short on hype, the examples
used throughout the book are very realistic and easy to grasp.
In 14 well organized chapters, the authors have assembled dozens
of Internet and marketing professionals who contribute editorial
sidebars and even entire chapters, providing a well-rounded body
of knowledge and experience. This is a good book to be reading next
to a Web station, as there are hundreds of URLs peppered throughout,
referencing resources, contributors and tech companies websites.
The book explains how online advertising is more measurable, accountable,
traceable and interactive than any medium before it. Both mass marketing
and direct marketing rules apply, and without understanding how
Internet advertising is like these, and unique, you could be wasting
your money advertising online.
Advertising on the Internet is a very comprehensive survey
of the advertising models and methods that are emerging as the new
medium takes shape.
The book also explores the wealth of marketing information that
can be collected and compiled via the web, buying and selling advertising
space on the Internet, and how to get your site and ads placed on
This book could have been titled marketing on the Internet, as
it puts Internet advertising into a wider context of a total marketing
Zeff and Aronson cover the issues, trends and technologies relating
to the biggest revolution in advertising since television. Traditional
advertising, (which builds brand awareness), and direct marketing,(which
generates leads and executes sales) is being done online, but there
is a lot of work between concept and reality.
The book does not assume any Internet knowledge on the readers'
part, yet does cover a lot of information which most people interested
in the subject might need to know.
Advertising on the Internet looks and reads like a textbook,
with the material starting out with general information and moving
into the specifics of such things as website traffic measurement,
and how the data collected can be used to maximize the advertising
and sales potential of the Internet.
This is a textbook of emerging online advertising models from banners
to interstitials, sponsorships to push technology, and it also tackles
privacy issues and the blurring of the line between editorial and
There are at least 500,000 sites that are selling advertising and
that number is expanding rapidly. Some of these are local in focus
and target and target local audience while others are national and
global in their reach. Both are examined in detail in this book.
There is a chapter devoted to placing advertising on the Internet,
and how to gauge the effectiveness of the ads, who is watching them,
for how long, at what time etc. The sheer volume of data generated
by such log file records presents it's own challenges to online
A good deal of space is dedicated to the art and science of web
traffic analysis which is key to managing any online advertising
initiative. The reader is walked through how log files are generated
and what are the key pieces of information that will determine the
placement and nature of online ads and promotions.
The authors discuss in detail when it may be appropriate to do
the work of web traffic analysis in house, and when it makes more
sense to bring in an outside firm. In addition to learning about
your customers through surveys, log files etc., you must be ready
to follow up on the data. The point is made that, while some companies
spend significant dollars on their personalisation software, many
fail to respond to emails from customers in a timely fashion.
The authors are very candid about the difficulty in predicting
the success of various advertising models, because of the rapid
growth of the Internet and the fact that the entire relationship
between advertisers, consumers and the Internet is still in its
This book is valuable for its impressive glossary of terms such
as "hits", "impressions", "CPM (cost per
thousand impressions)" and "targeting" and in-depth
discussions of what they mean. While the advantages of online advertising
are illuminated, there is a message that an online presence must
be one part of a larger marketing strategy.
Strategies for targeting a geographical area with local content,
paid for by local advertisers are also discussed, including different
ways of attracting and managing local traffic.
The authors have compiled an extensive resource guide which surveys,
among other things, top search engines, Internet marketing companies
There is a focus on the fact that online advertising is evolving
away from a digital version of the TV commercial or other broadly
targeted message and is moving towards being a channel for interactive
marketing, where the right customer is being reached at the right
time with the right message for him or her.
Collecting data on who is seeing the ad, what they want to see
and how ready they are to make a purchasing decision, as well as
the ability to analyze and make use of the data collected by various
Numerous real world examples provide some useful criteria by which
to judge the success of a particular online initiative and sparks
Advertising on the Internet is a good resource for those
people who are looking for an in depth review of past and current
Internet advertising practice and theory, as well as a good set
of indicators as to the probable directions that Internet advertising
may go. In any field that is expanding as rapidly as this, it is
impossible to accurately predict which will be the new models and
paradigms that will become dominant even in the near future.
Paul Garbutt is an account manager for Sources.
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Street, Suite 201, Toronto, ON M6G 1L9.
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