[Answered] Question regarding Ads Be Gone status

Discussion in 'Talk To Me' started by Horse, Apr 14, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. Horse
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    Horse Gold Member

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    I am aware that numerous members have earned the status "Ads Be Gone" after they reached 1000 status points in the months of February and most of March.

    However, it seems the Ads Be Gone status is no longer a benefit being given out to members.

    Anyone who earned Ads Be Gone before the change was made on this site are fortunate that they are no longer seeing the ads that pop up. I find the ads are rarely related to any aspect of travel. Nor are they connected to what sites I visit on the internet. Most ads here I see are for dating websites. On FT I saw ads, but they were always related to the site (airlines, hotels, credit cards, etc) or the topic on hand.

    Will MP ever again give an ads-free experience?
     
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  2. Kaanapali
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    Kaanapali Gold Member

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    I see a couple of issues here: One, will the ads free be given to members only once they achieve Gold? Second, the content of the ads themselves being appropriate/relevant to the purpose/intent of the forum/site.

    1) From http://milepoint.com/forums/help/trophies, I presume the answer to the first question is yes.
    2) I cannot opine on this, since I have not received ads in a while (and certain browsers block them better than others). However, it would be nice to tailor ads to certain forums (Starwood forum would see perhaps a SPG card ad, Travel forums deals from Travelocity etc) and I presume the software is being tweaked to encourage tailored/specific ads.
     
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  3. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I'm not sure how much specificity advertisers want. In that other place, I noticed that looking at Starwood pages resulted in ads from other hotel chains, looking at DL would lead to ads for UA and LH, plus CO credit cards. Sometimes a particular word out of context would lead to a very funny connection with the ads, although I can't remember any particularly good examples of this now.
     
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  4. Kaanapali
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    Kaanapali Gold Member

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    This would make sense if the idea was to "turn" competitors into customers...so I can see this with regard to the hotel and airline specific threads. However on the other board, the Starwood forum typically had the SPG card and the Hyatt thread had the Hyatt Visa being advertised. Perhaps a mix would be the ideal....of course the advertisers would have a large say into where and how their ads are promoted/placed...
     
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  5. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I think it depends on how much the company thinks it has achieved product penetration with its own product. When "most" SPG customers already have the AmEx SPG card, there's no desire to promote it further as this isn't cost effective unless it's done to prevent the customer from seeing other ads. OTOH, when a new related product is introduced, then existing customers are frequently the most desirable segment.

    It was amusing to watch the battle of the credit card ads during the DL/NW merger.
     
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  6. Kaanapali
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    Kaanapali Gold Member

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    I wonder when/if this will start (or if it has already) with regard to the UA/CO merger....but since are both are Chase products perhaps there won't be as many (or none) :confused:
     
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  7. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    The local ads on TV, billboards, light rail trains, etc. were excessive here, but we were not only NW headquarters but also the home of US Bank (the NW WorldPerks Visa card). It looked like they were going to fight to the death. US Bank also used email (from previous NW lists?), as did DL/AmEx.
     
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  8. Randy Petersen
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    Randy Petersen Founder

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    I think (and know) I can answer this and thanks for the question.

    Actually, your question gives me another point to correct some information you have. First of all, any ad-free status on milepoint was never posted to be 1000 status points. As well, actually there have been some members into the ad-free area even as close as yesterday. So just to clarify those two areas.

    Now, we do have intent on ad-free other than members being able to earn it and the process is ready. What we're still waiting is the completion of some intended other premium levels which will also include ad-free. Here's why we have decided to wait. It's just a matter of completing some paperwork with some partners for these premium levels. We have a concern for confusion if we go ahead and offer the simple ad-free right now and then in the next month offer the premium levels with ad free, that there will be some members wanting to move up or down the levels and frankly that creates a logistic nightmare of partial refunds and such that we're rather not have to deal with. We want a very simple A-B-C offer. So while this is not in place yet, we're really trying to create long-term benefits for our members without partial patchwork right now.

    As to ads, you might find it strange, but we have not put much if any work into selling ads for milepoint. Yes we know it is a likely way to cover the costs of proving milepoint to our members, but we're not here for the revenue side of things—we're here to try and build a sustainable and sound foundation for frequent flyers to share and gain information relative to their travels. As a result, you do get the types of situations that occur without a concrete ad program. Apologies for that, but consider the plus side ... we actually like working on the things still left to do for members such as content organization, coupon connection, building more content and even the Guide program and we'll get to figuring out how to pay the bills sometime later. So, give us a bit longer to get these programs into place and I think you'll be very happy with our direction ... tomorrow we will be 1 1/2 months old! Again thanks.
     
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  9. Gargoyle
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    Gargoyle Milepoint Guide

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    As to the relevance of ads- that is entirely dependent on the keyword bidding system used by advertisers and the ad agency (which I believe is Google Adwords, in this case). A company bids on keywords, and gets frequency and quality of placement based on their bid. For example, I could bed 72 cents per clickthru on the word "hilton" and 27 cents per pageview on "starwood", and you bid 70 cents per clickthru on "hilton" and 30 cents per pageview on "starwood", but I place a max spend per day of $10 and you have a max spend of $20. That will feed an algorithm (boy, that guy Al shows up everywhere) which determines when and how often my ad and yours appear.

    Milepoint probably has almost no say in the matter, except for (A) selecting Google Adwords as the ad content provider, and (B) I'm sure there is some basic content type control, so they can, for example, disallow ads for hotel escort/outcall services.
     
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  10. Randy Petersen
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    Randy Petersen Founder

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    Once we actually feel comfortable with our members daily needs on milepoint for technology, etc. we'll turn our attention that way. AdWords is really a lazy man's way to at least put something in place. Once we get going, we hope to have actual relevant advertisers and thus no need for space filler such as AdWords.
    I am sorry that this temp solution isn't perfect but members come before this other stuff. Thanks.
     
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  11. Horse
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    Horse Gold Member

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    Randy, thank you for responding to my question so quickly. I will watch for the premium levels offered when you release them and I hope to have MP be ads-free for me in the near future.

    I also appreciate everyone else's input on the subject here. Thanks for the discussion and support.
     
  12. Randy Petersen
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    Randy Petersen Founder

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    UPDATE: I'm not happy that we were not able to release our premium levels by May 1, the original goal. A slight delay with one potential partner and we have engaged other replacements so the effort is not dormant. We're doing something new, something fresh and for the right members something likely quite valuable so it's not that easy. But forge ahead we go. Thanks for your patience.
     
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