Display Ads Are Soft but other Units are Faring Well @ msnbc.com

Display Ads Are Soft but other Units are Faring Well @ msnbc.com

REDMOND, WA — msnbc.com has grown ad revenues for the fiscal year that just ended in June and is attracting advertisers in a range of categories, the site’s President Charlie Tillinghast told Beet.TV in an exclusive interview earlier this month.

“We have grown tremendously over the last year. Advertising in the display sector is still suffering…but we are seeing a changing mix in our advertising,” he explained. He added that some categories are rising, while others are falling, so it’s important to respond quickly with the right mix of options for viewers. One of the ways to do that is offering a number of new user experiences for the site, such as primary video players and show specific ones. MSNBC.com offers embedded video players for shows like “The Rachel Maddow Show,” community links, lists of most popular videos and the ability to search via keyword, including in-stream video search.

The site has experimented with a number of ad formats beyond pre-rolls, including “curtains” and “skins,” Tillinghast said. Also, MSNBC.com is testing a variety of online video ad formats with media agency Starcom. However, pre-rolls still dominate though because they work, he said.

MSNBC.com has been drawing more visitors just as its on-air network has grown ratings. The Web site drew 37.2 million unique visitors in May, ahead of CNN.com and Yahoo News, making it the top news site according to Nielsen Online ratings provided by MSNBC.com.

Daisy Whitney, Senior Producer