Go Viral, Get Paid

Attributor, a company that makes its money helping publishers of web content attach ad revenue to their offerings, put dollars to speculation in a just released study.

The study tracked online content from more than 100 publishers in a broad range of categories, including entertainment, sports, technology, politics, health, travel and automotive, scanning for proliferation across 30 billion Web pages during the month of September. The results indicate that the average publisher is missing out on more than $150k per year driven by the audience viewing their articles on other sites. By embracing open syndication through direct relationships with ad networks, content publishers may find an answer for the challenging advertising market.

The basic sum of this calculation is this: more eyeballs on site = greater chance of attracting advertiser. The thesis is that if you have hot content attracting viewers, why not get paid for it (even if your primary purpose is to generate buzz that leads to less direct revenue i.e. sales in stores)?

Open syndication attaches an ad to the content itself which goes with it wherever the content is picked up (think short commercials before embedded video clips). But will viewers balk at extra ad content? Can you get paid with bucks AND buzz?