Ad Senseless

By Shamus Posted Thursday Nov 2, 2006

Filed under: Rants 9 comments

So I decided to try GoogleAds on this site. They are ugly, but small and easy to use.

Since last night the dang thing has been advertising zoot suits, stilts, and nutrition guides. What the heck? Is it that hard for them to figure out what my site is all about? Do the words Geek Culture, RolePlaying, anime, and Videogames not ring a bell? Those words are on every page, and every image is tagged accordingly. This site has a decent focus and there is just no reason the targeting should be so totally off.

I’ll give it another day or two, but if it’s still advertising random stuff nobody cares about then I’ll pull the ad. Since GA doesn’t offer any direct way to guide the content, the only thing it has to go on is the text on my site. If it can’t make sense of that, then the whole thing is useless.

I mean, z00t suits? Crimey.

LATER: They already have all of my text cached, so the content of the front page shouldn’t matter. But just in case it does, let’s see if this does anything:

Doom videogame Dreamfall Atari Rollercoaster Roleplaying Dice Cosplay Anime Geeks Oblivion. Dungeons & Dragons 3.5 edition Monster Manual Player’s Guide. Video game Gamecube Sony Playstation XBox 360 Nintendo DS and Mario. Gameplay Dual Shock Lord of the Rings, Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, Return of the King. Manga comics. Spiderman and X-Man. Marvel comics. Videogame movie adaptations. Star Wars lightsabers and lightsaberbattles. The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and Harry Potter. Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, books, movie, and radio series. Myst, Quake, Riven, Doom3, Bethesda, Warcraft and MMORPG. RTS games and first-person shooters. Diablo. World of Warcraft, Geek Dice, Roleplaying Dice, Colored Dice, metal dice, plastic dice, 20-sided dice. Wizards, Gnomes, Fighters, Clerics. Dork Tower and Penny Arcade. Optimus Rhyme. Otaku’s favorite anime series. Haibane Renmei and sometimes Cowboy Bebop. Chibi characters and harem comedies.

Wow. That was like having Geek Tourette’s Syndrome.

If it can’t find my target demographic from that then the thing isn’t worth the 28,800 pixels I’m letting it use on my page.


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9 thoughts on “Ad Senseless

  1. Mark says:

    Oh man, “Lord Ringtone” is one of the ads now, presumably because of DM of the Rings. That’s pretty funny.

  2. Cineris says:

    From what I know about it, getting Google ads to offer relevant results to your site content takes a bit of tweaking and pruning.

    For what it’s worth I didn’t even notice them until I went looking for them.

  3. AngiePen says:

    You realize, of course, that you just said “zoot suits” in a post. Twice if the system can figure out what “z00t” means. If it was just advertising them at random before, it’ll be doing it deliberately now. You’re doomed, dude.


  4. Mark says:

    Hmmm, “Lord Ringtone” is gone and now I’m seeing a halloween promo and something for “stilts crazy legs” Strange. This post, at least, has one that says “Dice, Dice, and more Dice” and a bunch of advertising links, which is actually somewhat relevant.

  5. Pete Zaitcev says:

    Trying to tune Google ads is a losing game. Their engine gets utterly bewildered by a normal blog content (link above leads to Tracytoday which also confuses Google).

    I think the only way to make this work is to use something called “Blogads”. Try to see what Instapundit uses.

  6. Justin says:

    It took me a while to get the ads to stop showing exactly the opposite kind of stuff that I wanted to show on my blog. You just have to go into the AdSense interface and block certain websites from showing ads. Eventually, it’ll catch up and figure out what you actually want on the site.

  7. Corwin says:

    It amuses me greatly to scroll up and see that the second ad in the adwords block is titled “Don’t Sign Up For AdWords”

  8. Huckleberry says:

    As far as I can figure out, the ads are tailored to the specific article you’re currently reading. So, typing this comment, basically all the ads I see are related to advertising online, which _is_ the topic of this particular article; looking at the comments of virtual villagers, the ads seem to have caught on to the italisized word “breeding” that occurs in the text: 3 ads are related to breeding guinea pigs or dogs. So the problem seems to be that the ads’ focus is too narrow – they should look at all recent content, in order to target your usual audience, and not just at one article at a time.

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