The success of contextual based advertising options like Google's AdSense and the Yahoo Publisher's Network hasn't gone unnoticed by other companies looking to cash in on the contextual advertising craze. Last week performance marketing network and interactive agency AdValient released a new suite of contextual advertising tools dubbed Advario. The new program is designed to give publishers a new way to place advertising contextual advertising on their web sites.

At first glance, AdVario appeared to me to be nothing more than the latest varient of TopText or Gator ads. Users respond to ads by mousing over underlined text which launches a pop-up version of an ad. The TopText and Gator systems were widely criticized as "scumware" a few years back because they worked by overlaying advertising on web sites without the site owner's permission. The ad system worked by running through a browser add-on that was (usually) installed on a user's system without their knowledge. It then worked to overlay the ads on every page that a user visited.

After taking the time to check out AdVario a little more thoroughly, I was relieved to see that this system works by allowing site owners to offer the ads through their own site. Thus, the appearance of ads is completely controlled by publishers. There's no fear here of having an ad pop up on someone's web site without their permission.

AdVario CEO Peter Bordes is looking to offer up a way for both advertisers and publishers to capitalize on contextual advertising without having to go through a search engine system. "At AdValiant, we're creating innovative, relevant and intelligent performance products for marketers while providing new ways for publishers to monetize their fallow inventory," said Bordes. "While web marketers have funneled an increasing amount of money into performance campaigns, the vast majority of this money has been directed to search engines, not to web publishers. We anticipate that AdVario could help change that."

Advertisers have the option of running text links, HTML or Flash ads and to link those ads to landing pages for further information. Ads can be targeted contextually or behaviorally. (For an example of a site running AdVario advertisments, check out

Publishers are given control over the types of campaigns that run on their site in by allowing them to control the type of advertising that runs on their site and by allowing them to control the categorization of ads that they show. Advertisers are given the power to run text, HTML, Flash or rich media ads on a CPC, CPA, CMP and CPL basis.

For more information, visit the AdValient web site.

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November 7, 2005

Jennifer Laycock is the Editor of Search Engine Guide, the Social Media Faculty Chair for MarketMotive and offers small business social media strategy & consulting. Jennifer enjoys the challenge of finding unique and creative ways to connect with consumers without spending a fortune in marketing dollars. Though she now prefers to work with small businesses, Jennifer’s clients have included companies like Verizon, American Greetings and Highlights for Children.

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