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WordPress.com and Federated Media Reach Advertising Deal

Got a WordPress.com blog? Been dreaming about being a Federated Media blogger? Well, good news. It turns out that Automattic (owner of WordPress.com) and Federated Media have partnered to offer advertising on WordPress.com sites.

According to a Federated Media’s press release:

WordPress.com contributors epitomize the idea of passionate and influential publishers on the Independent Web,” said Deanna Brown, CEO, Federated Media Publishing. “They have ardent followings and they present information in a very focused, conversational format, which is exactly the type of media offerings found in the rest of our existing portfolio. They really are an excellent fit for us.”

So what does this mean for the WordPress.com blogger?

Factored into this deal is Automattic’s acquisition of Lijit Networks. According to yet another press release by Federated Media:

Lijit is a leading provider of advertising services, audience analytics and reader engagement tools for online publishers of all sizes. The combined entity will reach nearly 300 million global unique visitors according to Quantcast.

Not that much more information is currently available, but Inc. states:

This much is explained:

1. It will be an opt-in program for both bloggers and advertisers.

2. Federated is promising to embed ads “seamlessly” with sponsored posts and using what it calls “semantic search” to target specific conversations, rather than just key words.

The goal of this partnership is to monetize “long tail” keyword searches. According to Read Write Web:

Independent publishers on WordPress represent the long tail of Web content. They publish on specific topics for niche audiences. That makes their individual reach small, in terms of raw traffic numbers, but their audiences are highly engaged with particular interests. They’re valuable, but they’re hard to reach at scale.

Federated Media recently acquired Lijit Networks to improve its targeting of ads to long-tail content. Lijit offers publishers an on-site search box that searches across multiple sites, including blogs, tweets, bookmarks and photos. Publishers can adjust the constraints to include outside content if they want, making Lijit searches a powerful way for visitors to explore topics in more depth. Lijit reports that over 70,000 publishers currently use their service.

In turn, the rich site data gathered by Lijit enables precise and relevant ad targeting, and it has served over 28.3 billion ads so far this year. Lijit’s technology, Federated Media’s scale and the WordPress.com audience represent a big chunk of high-quality, topically focused Web traffic that major advertisers like AOL, Yahoo! and Google have more trouble monetizing.

This partnership will offer small publishers a way to monetize, and it will give FMP the additional scale of reaching almost 300 million monthly unique visitors to WordPress.com sites.

This ad network is opt-in only. If you have a WordPress.com blog, what say you? Will you opt in?

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