I am new to this forum, but wish I had visited earlier since I see a lot of creative ideas and very knowledgeable experts.
I operate a web-based platform for keeping a journal or diary (also known as weblog). We have about 90,000 registered users keeping journals. People come to our site to post entries to their public and private journals, or they come to read public journals. There are also a number of community-oriented features which are popular.
Unfortunately we have very sucky server log reporting software, which crapped out a while back and didn't provide much useful data anyway. Nielsen Net Ratings is telling us we get about 250,000 monthly uniques and 247 Real Media is telling us about 650,000 uniques.
Here are some stats i'm more confident about:
Daily page views: 50K (I expect 2x or 3x that daily rate by year's end)
U.S. traffic: ~85%
Demographics: heavily teen and college age, ~65% female
Average visit: 11 minutes
I've tried some of the networks, but the yields are pretty terrible. Have found that CTR on this type of site is minimal, and these R.O.N. players do not serve relevant ads. CPM works ok, but I need better rates and more relevant advertisers. Have tried 247 and it absolutely sucked. AdSense didn't do much because of the low CTR. Fastclick turned me down for content concerns.
At this point I'm getting ready to move forward with a professional publisher rep that drums up advertising deals for decent sized sites like mine, and I'm hopeful about what he can do, since he's an "expert".
Are there any other avenues or specific networks or firms I should pursue to fully monetize my site's traffic? Any thoughts on a range that I should be expecting if all cylinders are firing?
Thanks in advance!