Gourmet Ads is our first featured ad network.
We are quite pleased to have Gourmet Ads as our first featured ad network.
Gourmet Ads is a global vertical ad network reaching household Grocery Buyers with offices in North America, United Kingdom, Canada and Australia. The Gourmet Ads network only represents quality food and wine websites throughout the world, aggregating and managing advertising across these highly relevant websites and blogs.
Below is our interview with Benjamin Christie, Managing Director and Founder of Gourmet Ads.
AdNetworks.NET: Currently, Gourmet Ads serves advertisers in the Food vertical who are trying to target consumers in USA, UK, Canada and Australia. Any other key market segments I am forgetting?
BC: No, those are our key geographical markets, but from an audience segment perspective Gourmet Ads concentrates on reaching the grocery buyer online. We tend to see this demographic being 27 – 55 year old female who makes the majority of the grocery buying decisions in the household. From a targeting perspective we then separate this up to 3 different age demographic targets enabling advertiser to target them via the sites in the network.
AdNetworks.NET: What competitive advantages does your previous experience as an Executive Chef, TV Co-Host, and Cookbook Author provide you when servicing your clients?
BC: Having experience in the food industry from being behind the stove to presenting recipes in front of a camera has certainly provided a great deal of understanding of what the public likes when it comes to food. Additionally having worked in online media and owned my own website prior to developing Gourmet Ads gave me real insight into how companies can use online to develop brand awareness and generate sales.
AdNetworks.NET: Without giving away your secrets, what makes for a successful campaign for an advertiser in your vertical looking to launch an online advertising campaign?
BC: The first is being relevant to our audience. Obviously food and wine advertisers have increased success simply because they are food and wine products. But we do run a great deal of advertising for non food or wine products and once again the advertising itself needs to be relevant to our audience of female, 27-55 years old. Areas that do perform well include Automotive, Travel, Financial and Lifestyle based campaigns.
The second is creative. There is no doubt that great looking creative with key messaging and strong calls to action outperforms ordinary ads. We highly recommend that clients produce Flash ads compared to static and we work hard with advertisers to develop creative that works. When possible we ask that they provide 2 or 3 sets of ads, so we can determine the best performing ad unit and messaging for campaign success.
AdNetworks.NET: How does working with Adify enhance your ability to deliver quality results for your advertiser and publisher partners?
Adify have been a great partner from day one and working with them has definitely given us competitive edge because of their platform. Adify provides us a wide range of targeting features allowing us to hone in on a client’s target market. Additionally working with Adify provides us the ability to manage hundreds of publisher relationships, opposed to just being an ad server.
AdNetworks.NET: Again, without giving away too much, are you finding certain technologies or targeting features most effective for an advertiser’s campaigns in your vertical?
Because we are a global network, every campaign we run must have some sort of geo targeting. We have the ability to go down to the zip level right up to country or global level. This has allowed us to work with smaller clients such as regional supermarkets and grocery store clients who only want to reach small areas such as 3 or 4 DMA’s. A fair percentage of clients are also using some sort of cookie based targeting as part of their campaigns.
AdNetworks.NET: Should small advertisers check out Gourmet Ads or do you primarily work with advertisers with a large ad spend?
Yes, we work with both global companies undertaking brand advertising right down to small family owned ecommerce sites requiring a direct response focus. Because of our geo targeting capabilites, we can restrict a advertising campaign to display locally in just a Zip Code, thus not wasting impressions in areas that are not relevant.
AdNetworks.NET: How do you define “quality content” when selecting publishers for your network?
The key is that unlike the majority of other ad networks, we simply don’t allow just any website to join and start running ad tags straight away. Every site we include in the Gourmet Ads network must adhere to our strict guidelines which are openly published on www.gourmetads.com. By rejecting unsuitable sites from the network means that we provide advertisers an environment which is brand safe and transparent.
For inclusion in the network, we look for a well designed website with uniquely developed content and a solid audience. We also work with sites to ensure they have ad units above the fold, thus making sites as attractive as we can for advertisers.
AdNetworks.NET: Ad exchanges have received significant media attention over the past 6 months.What are your thoughts on ad exchanges? Do you feel that comparing a premium, brand network to an ad exchange’s “remnant inventory” is “apples and oranges”?
We don’t use ad exchanges, because our clients require 100% transparency on which sites where their ads will run. Additionally because we have strict editorially criteria for sites to be included in the network we prefer not to run our ads on sites we don’t “know”.
AdNetworks.NET: Why should someone who hasn’t tried out a vertical network take a look?
BC: Particularly for food and wine advertisers, vertical ad networks such as Gourmet Ads provides advertisers the ability to buy and target advertising on multiple sites in one transaction, eliminating buying on a site-by-site basis. Because we specialise in food and wine, we know what works for advertisers and what doesn’t.
AdNetworks.NET: How has the ad network community developed since you got involved and where do you see it heading?
Since we started a few years back, the ad network community has certainly exploded which has increased the competition in the market place. Heading towards the future, I feel that there needs to be a little consolidation and I believe that as the economy returns, we’ll see acquisitions from not only other ad networks, but I believe they we’ll see media companies starting to buy into ad networks allowing them to increase their reach and viability in the long term.
AdNetworks.NET: Any exciting announcements/plans for the New Year?
As we roll into 2010, we’ve got lots on. The year starts with an advertising agency road show across London as we prepare to expand out UK network. Not only are we expanding the UK, but we’re recruiting more sites into the network enabling greater reach for clients, particularly in the US and Canada.
Throughout 2009 we’ve experienced a great deal of enquiry for beyond the banner placements, and we’re currently developing higher impact units for clients. Our team is working on about 4-5 different placements which can be deployed across hundreds of sites quickly and cost efficiently to provide greater ROI for advertising clients.
Source : www.adnetworks.net – Featured Ad Network – Gourmet Ads.