Drudge Report's ad broker discusses innovation -- no, really! -- and why he loves banner ads
Last October when Time magazine compiled its "most influential websites of all time," it put the Drudge Report report squarely at No. 8. Eight! The conservative political news site hovers high in the top ten list of U.S. media publishers of the Marketers' Intelligence Blog, too.
And it's true. Personally speaking, when an Ad Age story finds its way onto Matt Drudge's bare-bones curated list of news links, the traffic spike is eye-popping. It's drive-by traffic, sure, the quality of which is maybe questionable. It yields a few weird comments on our site. But the impact is undeniable: The badly designed Web 1.0 relic is a traffic monster, still. In 2018.
Under the hood at Drudge, and other conservative sites like it—including Political Insider, Smith & Wesson Forum and MRC Newscasters—is its advertising marketing firm Intermarkets. And under the hood of Intermarkets is Erik Requidan, VP of programmatic strategy.
In an era when the advertising community likes to talk about inclusivity and embracing divergent viewpoints, Requidan says he feels like the odd man out. He joins us on the Ad Lib podcast today to make the case for how Drudge and his other sites—as video-free and Craigslist-looking as they still are—are actually innovative on the tech front. Header bidding optimization anyone? PMP offerings, maybe?
Yet for all his lip service to innovation, Requidan also mounts a spirited defense of the lowly banner ad, calling it "the workhorse of the industry." He also argues that reports of the cookie's death have been grossly overstated -- and says that there hasn't really been as much of a shakeout in the ad tech Lumascape as predicted.