Advertisements and 37Signals

June 5th, 2008

As you may have seen, 37Signals announced an affiliate program yesterday. a lot of companies do this, but 37Signals’ terms are very fair — maybe too fair: for whatever people you refer to them, they give you 50% of their first monthly fee, and 5% from then on.

As I said, a lot of companies do it. As you may also notice, TightWind’s sidebar now has the smallest available Basecamp badge. There’s a reason, or reasons, why I decided to participate in 37Signals’ program and not others: I actually love Basecamp and 37Signals the company.

My blog does not exist to pimp other people’s products. It exists as a means for me to write about whatever the hell I want, however I choose to write about it, and it exists for you to enjoy it.

I also have the intention of making some kind of revenue from my writing, but unlike many websites that use advertising (or most, really), TightWind’s intention is not to flood the page with ads for subpar products and services that no one wants to use. Up until today, TightWind has had a single, two-line adsense-supplied ad that is designed to blend into the page rather than grab your attention from what you are here for: the content.

37Signals is a company I admire. They make great products, and adhere to their stated philosophy faithfully: make simple, well-designed apps that people can actually use.

I use Basecamp every day, and I recommend it whenever someone is looking for a project management application. So instead of just recommending it in person, I am now recommending it with a small badge on TightWind.

I do not mind advertisements when they are subtle and genuinely interesting, which is why I love the Deck and hope they will replace adsense as my main adverts in the future. Ad-providers like the Deck add value to a website, because they bring useful products to a reader’s attention with dignified, well-designed ads.

The Basecamp badge is, like the Deck’s ads, well-designed. So, let’s summarize here: I can recommend a product and company I respect by using a quite nice badge in my sidebar, and make money doing it?

Sounds like a no-brainer to me.