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Maximise Your Revenue by Developing a Multi-Tier Monetisation Mix

As digital monetisation methods continue to evolve it's becoming vital for publishers to develop diversified revenue streams both within and beyond advertising.  It has become increasingly apparent that reliance on advertising alone – particularly display banner style advertising – is highly unlikely to meet revenue objectives but can complement a broader monetisation mix.

There is a growing range of monetisation options available to all types of traditional and non-traditional media publishers. These requireDeveloping multi-tier digital revenue streams different skill levels, some being passive or low effort and others involving online sales specialists structuring tailored solution-based opportunities which meet the specific needs of marketers.

The amount of revenue generated by a publisher is dependent on factors such as competitive positioning, market vertical and reach to target market. 

Here we offer an overview of different tiered revenue streams which can be applied through websites, blogs, newsletters, social media, tablet and emerging digital platforms -

Tier 1 – Premium Tailored Advertising

Predominately sold through a specialised in-house dedicated ad sales specialist/team.  These are usually high yield packages which are sold on a tailored basis to meet an advertisers specific brief. Cost is not necessarily dependent on the total amount of traffic rather reach against a sites target market and their audiences engagement levels.

Examples of advertising sold through this premium tier include:

  • - Sponsorship/Contextual Placements
  • - Advertorial/Branded Content/Native Advertising
  • - Audience Product Surveys
  • - Webinar/Podcast
  • - Sponsored Video
  • - Newsletter & EDM
  • - Directory/Classifieds
  • - Social Media Advertising
  • - Premium Cost Per Thousand (CPM) Display Advertising
  • Advertising Sales Centre - articles, guides and tips for media owners and sales specialists to develop commercial strategies

Tier 2 – Digital Sales Representation Agency Selling Premium Display Advertising

Display online and digital advertising inventory can be outsourced to a sales representation agency and sold at a premium rate – mostly cpm (cost per thousand impressions).  These sales representation agencies take a percentage of all sales and sometimes a monthly retainer and bonus depending on generated revenue. 

Each sales representation agency has their own set of criteria regarding who they choose to represent usually based on impression and unique browser levels, market vertical, quality of site content and reach to target market.

Tier 3 – Automated Digital Trading Networks and Exchanges

Digital advertising sold and optimised through automated networks and exchanges offers media owners an incremental, low effort revenue stream to add to a broader and often higher yield monetisation mix.  Publishers can decide what and how much inventory they sell through these automated networks.  Increasingly they are seen as an opportunity to monetise unsold and remnant  inventory leaving sales teams free to concentrate on higher yielding tailored solutions such as those outlined in Tier 1.  Many online pubishers generate revenue through at least one automated digital trading network.

These automated options are also available and highly effective for smaller publishers who perhaps do not have specialised expertise in digital advertising sales or run other platforms such as directories or classifieds sites.

Non-traditional media attracting a high niche audience can also add an easy to manage additional advertising based revenue stream through automated network options. 

A combination of automated network options can be applied and optimised.

Examples of advertising types sold through this automated tier include -

  • - Performance (cost per lead, cost per click, cost per acquisition)
  • - Display (cost per thousand - usually low)
  • - Lead Generation
  • - Affiliate
  • - Exchanges, Real Time & DMP (Data Management Platforms)
  • MarketPlace - selected products and services for publishers to build revenue and streamline their media trading process

Tier 4 – Multi-Media & Emerging Platforms

Media brands are increasingly becoming 'platform neutral' and evolving to other tablet based devices in line with audience needs and technology trends - and then applying a revenue strategy to these extension platforms.  Platforms can include mobile, ipad and other tablets such as android - with revenue strategies still emerging and adapting.

Tier 5 - Non-Advertising Revenue Streams

There are a range of non-advertising revenue options which can be applied to digital and online platforms. 

These include:

  • -    Paid Content/PayWalls
  • -    Paid for Editorial/Blog Comment (not recommended unless shown as sponsored copy)
  • -    Retail/e-tail/m-commerce/t-commerce
  • -    Branded Merchandise
  • -    Events & Seminars
  • -    Content Syndication
  • -    Offering specialised and consultancy skills

As different revenue opportunities continue to develop each digital media brand can apply their own unique combination of effective advertising and non-advertising revenue streams depending on factors such as traffic, target market and levels of available skill and expertise.


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