OIOPublisher – Paid Reviews & Paid Links

 

OIO PublisherThere would be a gaping hole in my content coverage if I didn’t mention the release of OIOPublisher, who are trying to find a way to totally cut out the middleman in both paid reviews and paid links.

They won’t be taking a cut from sales in any way, and all deals are done directly between advertiser and site owner.

So How Do They Make Money?

The plan is to charge for premium listings in their directories on a monthly basis, and the fees so far proposed are reasonable if they can get traction, though that might require a large marketing budget or a skilled PR job.

Multi-platform

OIOPublisher provide a WordPress plugin, but also a hosted service so that it can be used to sell reviews or links for any kind of blog.

Link Options

Textlinks with the current interface can be purchased for the front page, sitewide or on a contextual basis, selecting a specific page, and the word on that page which should be linked to the advertiser.

Glancing at Features

I haven’t actually installed the plugin yet, so this is just a heads up and overview, but from what I can see posts are selected by post ID and URL – I am not sure how that would work for blogs that don’t provide a post ID though I suppose that is easily displayed.

Ideally there would be an interface that you could have on each page of your blog to specify purchasing a link on that page. Also it seems that contextual links are designed for linking from within existing content only, so there is no way of having a “Related Featured Links” breakout box.

Based on my testing, the WordPress plugin doesn’t seem to add links to RSS feeds, maybe a good thing. I wonder how an interface would work where you could order links to one of your sites for a post that hasn’t been published yet.

The system seems to allow for purchase renewal, but doesn’t have subscription options available.

Purchase control procedures allow you to approve a post, but not publish it until you have been paid – in some way this is a major improvement over other paid post and paid link solutions, because no money is held until such time as the advertiser knows something will be published, although.

The system can be configured to have all links nofollow

Maybe there should be a little more control over this, or some people would want different price points.

Just like the WordPress Bankroll plugin when it was first released, there is currently no support for adding tags to a paid post, but I am sure that can be implemented fairly easily.

I am not sure if paid links also appear on duplicate content pages, I will have to experiment.

The plugin code is GPL, so anything the plugin doesn’t currently do can easily be modified to your own requirements

  • If you already own WP Bankroll, depending on your usage, OIOPublisher doesn’t offer many additional features and is missing a few
  • Wp Text Ads plugin @ $127 seems like a very raw deal in comparison

At the end of the day, I know which option most people will use, the one that is free and multi-platform. With a large userbase, there is a high chance that an advertiser community will also develop though it will take a while to get larger advertisers on board, and there is very little quality control.

This doesn’t really replace the marketplace provided by PayPerPost, ReviewMe or Sponsored Reviews all of which serve mass markets with their existing client base.

I am also not sure it replaces a service like PPP Direct – WP Bankroll I mentioned in my review of PayPerPost Direct and the 10% surcharge is minor when they eat the costs and provide some level of escrow.

Will plugins like this lead to bloggers being banned from various paid post services? It is possible, because I have noticed a massive trend in charging an inflated amount for reviews just to appear higher in the listings on each service, with no intention of selling paid reviews for that price. I priced things based upon what I wanted to receive for my time.

As far as text links, I think I might be in the minority as I have never signed up for Text Link Ads or similar service, simply because they have an exclusivity clause in their terms and conditions. You couldn’t “play the field” and sell your own links, whilst also selling text link ads.

Text Link Ads do have their Feed advertising program, which possibly pays better and is more flexible than other feed advertising services, but you could always replace them with your own.

OIOPublisher is certainly worth a look.

 

Liked this post? Follow this blog to get more. Follow

Comments

    • says

      Certainly their marketplace will need some work to allow publishers to find bloggers based on different characteristics such as niche, price, etc, though if the data is in a database, displaying that data in different ways isn’t really a challenge.

  1. says

    Thanks for doing a review of the site Andy, I appreciate it. A few good points raised on the plugin front too – particularly the idea of providing page specific purchase links. I hadn’t thought of that, but I’ll definitely be adding it at some point.

    Tagging – again a good point, although when I did consider it I kept coming back to the viewpoint that when a blog owner is editing / writing a post, and they have tagging enabled, would it not be just as effective to let the them add in the tags? Maybe not.

    This is the reason I put the code under GPL though, since wordpress is a large community, and hopefully a few users will contribute their improvements. Of course that may not happen, but I don’t like the idea of encrypting code or limiting its usage.

    The one big plus point over wp-bankroll that I can see is the use of contextual linking (unless that’s been put in recently, I haven’t checked in all honesty). I do however agree that more work needs doing on the fine control aspects (ie. allowing different attributes for different link types etc).

    On the marketplace side, I agree that in its current state it won’t replace something like PPP or ReviewMe – something to be (and already is being) worked on. An hour or 2 ago I was drafting the first monthly newsletter for the site, where I noted just that, and laid out some ideas for improvement.

  2. says

    They soud like a very promising program. That is the sort of thing I wish I had started… I almost did a few months back but changed my mind.

  3. says

    Andy,

    Simon has started well with his plugin. We’ve just become friends and I hope he does well.

    I’d just like to point out that WP Text Ads can be used for free.

    It costs $127 for the upgrade to show unlimited links. The free version is somewhat limited, but it can make more than enough to cover the one-time license fee. If a blogger doesn’t sell enough links to cover that cost, then he can use the free version forever.

    Your statement seems to give the impression that WP Text Ads is not free. I would appreciate it if you could make that clarification.

    Alex

    • says

      Alex I would love to agree but I can’t and I did mention to you privately back in May that I thought the price for a single blog was too high, and was more in line with unlimited usage, if you also had an affiliate program.

      Based on currently pricing with links being nofollow, it could take 3 months or more just to be able to afford the plugin upgrade from the free version for average bloggers (not the top 5%)

      Your marketplace currently seem to be around 20 bloggers despite some reasonable coverage on multiple “make money” blogs, thus there definitely seems to be some evidence that my evaluation was at least with some merit.

      Simon might be missing a few features if I did a head-to-head, but likewise so would WP Text Ads, and such a comparison would be head-to-head with the full version.

      I think Simon has a better business model, and one possible avenue to explore would be to join forces.

  4. says

    A couple of updates later, and here I am, still working away on improvements! Actually, it’s been going rather well (minus the marketing factor, which I’m deligating to someone else lol).

    Earlier this week I thought about the viral potential of ad sales, and what struck me was the lack of bloggers being able to use their readership to sell their ads for them! So, I created an affiliate system to work along side everything else, which I would hope will be a big future selling point. Readers can signup for an affiliate link, earn a percentage, and everybody’s happy!

    Also got an API up and running (in its early stages) to combat the problem of blogger “isolation”. Slowly but surely, I’m managing to put together what I think is now a unique package, with a lot of potential. Not that I’m biased or anything!

Trackbacks