Go, Do, Be.


Rubicon Project Ad Network Sloughs-off Small Publishers

By: Chris Greacen - 12/15/2009
Looks like my run with the Rubicon Project is about to end. They are starting to charge publishers a (laughable) $2000/month fee for using their network. I'd love to make more than $2k/mo over on NetScrap.com, but even with 100k impressions a month it's nowhere near that volume. This likely spells the end of my relationship with Rubicon.

Rubicon's service had a great promise: automatic optimization for the ad campaigns that run on your site. They claimed that they'd be able to run the highest-value ads through this optimization. Their system seemed to perform well for a few months, but like all networks the effective CPM eventually started to peter-out.

My guess is that Rubicon's continual focus on premium (read: large-volume) publishers is really driving this. Do they need to aim high-value ads toward their premium properties? Are the operational costs really catching up with their network? The ads on NetScrap.com make a little dough to cover part of the hosting costs. The returns haven't been that great though, maybe I'll just kill them all.

Rubicon Folks-

I am disappointed to read about these changes in your terms. Your decision to scrape small publishers off of your network by charging fees seems to be directly opposed to your 'power to the publisher' tagline. I hope the premium publishers you pursue will accept and understand this apparent disconnect between your claims and your actions.


Here's the notification from the Rubicon team:

Dear Customer,

It's been a growth-filled year at the Rubicon Project. We've expanded internationally to several continents, continued enhancing our technology and support offerings and welcomed hundreds of new customers to our developing global family.

Over a year ago, we narrowed our focus to concentrate on the premium publisher segment of the market -- tailoring our products, services and level of support to meet their needs. At that time we ceased taking on new sites that didn't meet minimum impression and managed revenue thresholds, but allowed existing small to mid-sized publisher customers to remain using the platform and services.

Despite great strides in developing and applying patent-pending technologies to the management of display inventory, due to the nature of the industry we operate in, there are a number of key elements that still require considerable amount of staff and resources. Primary among those are the development of new ad network relationships, applying resources to collect and consolidate stats from disparate ad networks, billing, responding to and resolving publisher inquires and managing a high level of overall ad quality. As we always strive to give the best to everyone we work with, we've continued to service small and mid-sized publishers, some running 25,000-100,000 impressions a month just as we do premium publishers running 50 million a month. The costs have really begun to add up and we've come to the realization that this simply isn't scalable given our existing basic fee structure.

Beginning January 1st, in order for publishers to continue to be able to access our technology platform and associated support services, we are instituting a requirement for a monthly minimum fee of $2,000, below which a publisher will have to make up the difference. By means of example, if your fee on managed revenue ends up being only $500 a month, you will be responsible for the additional $1,500 to make up for the costs associated with managing and supporting our, and your, business. We recognize these minimums are not going to work for all publishers. If you choose to pass on the new monthly minimum and close your account, we hope you will continue to keep us in mind as your traffic grows and it makes more economical sense for you.

One thing to consider when making your decision on how you would like to proceed, is how your traffic is currently allocated and whether you are serving all your Ad Networks through the Rubicon platform vs. outside of it. This additional traffic might help you meet the minimum monthly fee, while at the same time providing additional lift for your overall inventory.

If you would like to continue to access the Rubicon Project's technology and services, please let us know no later than December 18th by responding to globalsupport@rubiconproject.com Best Regards, the Rubicon Project

This email was sent to: *@netscrap.com*

This email was sent by: the Rubicon Project 1925 S Bundy Drive Los Angeles, CA 90025 USA