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How can I sell some unusual media space?

Adding advertising to downloaded PDFs



4:17 pm on Sep 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I'm not sure where this question belongs, but this looked like my best bet.

I have a site that offers free PDF downloads in a specialized area. There is a generic version and a custom version for each offering. About 30,000 downloads per month. I'm guessing that the majority of the PDFs are printed out and handed out to multiple people.

It occurred to me that I could put a 'sponsored by' notice at the bottom of each page, or just a plain one-line ad.

There would be no way for an advertiser to track the effectiveness of the ads, but on the other hand you are putting your ad literally in the hands of interested people.

Does this make any sense? If so, how could I sell this space? Who should I approach? How much should I ask?


5:24 pm on Sep 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member wheel is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

Funny, I was just considering this today.

Bloggers in my niche have various downloads, ebooks, and calculators. The calculators are normally nothing more than an excel spreadsheet one can download from their site.

The bloggers sell sponsored ad space on all of those. For example, the spreadsheets have listings of different product types. YOu can sponsor a product type and get your name on the excel download. Which is potentially great advertising - if they're using the spreadsheet to do product research, well heck - there you are!


7:23 pm on Oct 3, 2011 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

"There would be no way for an advertiser to track the effectiveness of the ads"

why is that?


11:43 pm on Oct 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Why is that?

Maybe 'no way' is too strong. They could count clicks from the PDF, if it had links. If the PDF ad campaigns was the only one they had going, they could consider increased sales.

But in my (non-advertising-trained) view, this is similar to buying space on a billboard. Obviously, there is value in this, but it's really hard to measure.

I'm comparing this to a Google ad campaign, where you can fairly precisely measure your ROI for any given ad.

I don't want to sound too negative here - I want to sell the space. I just don't know how to create a 'value proposition' for an advertiser.

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