©IDG Communications, Inc. Photo contributed by Matthew Mikaelian.
For years now, many big-name publishers have resisted the siren song of digital ad exchanges. True, the exchanges offer companies the possibility that they can move more of their inventory while cutting out the ad networks that traditionally serve as middlemen, but the risk of putting further pressure on their ad rates seem to outweigh the benefits.
Now, several publishers, from NBC Universal to The Weather Channel to IDG, are opting for a third way.
They’re setting up private exchanges that allow them to retain a semblance of control over pricing and quality, and avoid channel conflicts with their sales staffs. Only certain buyers are welcome, and there are strict rules about what’s for sale and at what price.