November 5th, 2008

Since mid-summer, TightWind has been almost advert-free, save a small Basecamp badge.

That changed last Friday. Michael Mistretta’s new company, Fusion Ads, launched last week. Their goal is simple: deliver one simple, relevant and unobtrusive ad per page on growing weblogs which provide great content.

This is what I have been waiting for. When I started writing TightWind, my first intention was to write content that is fundamentally worth reading. I think I have met that goal,1 and so my next goal is to generate revenue from it.

I do not, however, want to advertise under the conventional model — which is to pack as many ads on to a page as possible, without any consideration for whether the products are worth using, or whether the ads detract from the content, which is why the website exists in the first place.

I think advertising on a page can and should be an additional service for the reader. I removed Adsense during summer both because it was ineffective (readers did not click on links because they were not interested in the ads), and because it detracted from TightWind. In its place, I put in a Basecamp badge, because it is a benefit to the reader. Basecamp is an excellent product, so I have no problem recommending it to readers.

Luckily, Michael agrees that advertising should be an added service for readers. The ads shouldn’t distract from the content with audio or flashing images, and they shouldn’t be for worthless products.

Fusion ads are small, unobtrusive, and for good products that excite me, and are likely to excite you, too.

I am incredibly excited for what Fusion ads, and TightWind, will do in the future. I hope you enjoy Fusion as much as I do.

  1. Although there is much room for improvement, and my intention is to continue making deeper analysis and more polished writing. []