Written on October 13th, 2005 at 04:10 pm by Darren Rowse

Adgenta Blog Ads - First Impressions Review

Advertising 26 comments

[Ad]GentalogoAfter a lot of hints the team at Qumana have launched the AdGenta advertising system for bloggers.

They describe the system as:

‘a post-centric advertising system. Post-centric ads appear wherever your post does: your blog, your feed, and search results. Each ad is based on what you think it should be, using keywords you define, not context a computer thinks up.’

The ads are not contextual ads - bloggers trigger them by choosing keywords - and they are not true ‘text’ ads really as they are image based ads which allows them to appear in both your blog and RSS feed easily. The beauty of them is that you can insert them anywhere in your posts as you wish.

You can see them in action at the Qumana blog.

I’ve not used AdGenta but have seen it implemented on a number of blogs. I thought I’d give some of my first impressions from an outsider’s perspective:

The Positives

There is a lot to like about AdGenta - including Payment via Paypal and a low $20 earning threshold before they’ll pay you. It also is said to work seamlessly with Qumana - a system that I’ve not tested because I’m on a Mac and it’s PC based.

The design options for AdGenta seem pretty extensive - they allow you to have control over 9 elements of your ads - much more than any other system I’ve seen. These elements are - Dimensions, Background Color, Border Color, Footer Color, Gradient Color, Title Font Color, Text Color, URL Color and Footer Font Color. That is pretty customizable stuff!

I’m also impressed that it seems you can track your ad performance on a post by post basis. This to me is great as it allows you to see which are your most profitable topics, positioning and ad designs.

I can’t see anywhere what percentage bloggers get from what advertisers pay - they say it’s generous and that they hope to share the percentage at some point to make it more transparent.

A question that is sure to be asked is ‘Can I use AdGenta with Google Adsense?’

Again on their help pages they write:

‘You can use both advertising programs without violating any known terms of service agreements. So long as you use the keyword field to drive your advertisements, the ads will not be contextual, and therefore will not violate your Google agreement.’

This is quite surprising to me as I’ve heard of Adsense disallowing site owners showing different ad systems on the grounds that they look too similar to Adsense ads - something I would have thought the AdGenta ads were in danger of doing. Adsense’s policy page says that ads that ‘mimic Google ads’ are not allowed.

I’m sure the AdGenta team have done their homework on this and this is a big win for them - however I’d love to get some direct feedback from Adsense on this before I give AdGenta a go.

The Negative

One of the interesting aspects of AdGenta is that they are selling it as something that you ‘don’t turn on or off on your entire site‘ - rather its something you insert in your posts individually. While I can see the advantage of this in terms of uniquely formatting entries it also doesn’t appeal to me on other fronts.

I’m thinking of the day when I discover that the ad design I’m using isn’t working well - or when I decide to stop using AdGenta and where I’d have to go into individual posts to make the changes. Perhaps I’m misunderstanding their system - but I have 12,000 pages of content on my blogs already - the idea of having to add this to all of them and make changes page by page doesn’t really appeal to me.

They write in their Help section:

‘There is no way to remove these ads as a whole, since they appear dynamically generated pictures.’

If I had to pick a weakness with the system this would be it in terms of the way I go about my blogging.

The other negative at present is that non Qumana users can’t use AdGenta - this excludes Mac users and anyone who is presently happy with the way they go about blogging with other tools

Will I use it?

This is the 64million dollar question I guess - will I be trying AdGenta for myself.

While I think there is a lot of positive things to be said for the system I can’t seem to get passed the one negative of having to manually add it and remove it from posts. For me to implement AdGenta across my 20 blogs would be a logistical nightmare and so I’m regrettably not going to implement it at this time.

Of course there is also the slight problem of not being able to use it via my Mac me not wanting to swap from using Ecto to another blogging tool to upload my posts to blogs.

If they can get over the non Qumana user issues I might give it a go on a new blog project that I’m looking at as it will be easy enough to implement on a new blog.

Otherwise - congratulations for the AdGenta team - well done on putting together what seems a professional looking and operating system. I’m sure it will suit some bloggers a lot better than it does me and that it will continue to grow and improve in time.

26 Responses to “Adgenta Blog Ads - First Impressions Review”

  • Sounds interesting, I am looking for a system that could upload to my collection of blogs with a few clicks. I will check it out and report back.

  • Their “post centric” concept doesn’t sound too sexy to me. Especially about ads in feeds : is there still anyone out there thinking that these are profitable ?

  • At this point, you do “have” to use Qumana in order to use Adgenta, which counts Mac people out. I just started using Qumana, today. It allows you to add all of the blogs that you write for to the program, write and publish with just a few clicks. It doesn’t support “all” blogging platforms, but it does support the most popular ones.

    I remember seeing something about a 50% revenue share, but when I went to look for it, just now, it looks like that information has been removed. In this section , it reads “We believe in helping bloggers earn as much money as possible. We will continue to share this percentage of revenue, helping you earn money and to understand your revenue in a transparent manner.”

    When they refer to “this percentage”, you can see that something was edited, so I wasn’t seeing things. Whew!!!

  • Wow, your right. When I read that you need to use Qumana to use it I thought you missed something (well actually I thought that you had missed something but straight away figured that I missed something).

    When I did some research found that the interface that I thought that would allow you to do it from a web interface (that is available (but I probably shouldn’t mention the URL. If Tris wants to, I am sure he would send it on to you)) is only available from within Qumana.

    Thanks for your thoughts.

  • Isn’t Arieanna Foley of Adgenta also on the B5media team? Why not ask her directly about the percentages?

  • I can’t find a quotes tool anywhere, and being the big bad reblogger that I am if it aint got quotes I am not using it. Wordpress bookmarklets do a better job.

  • HostingDiary - I’m sure to get a comment from Arieanna when her part of the world wakes up. I’m pretty sure I saw % mentioned earlier on somewhere but it seems to have been removed. I’m sure they’ll reveal it in time and have good reasons for not doing so yet.

  • I’ve not get the chance to look at the AdGenta ads samples in Qumana blog. Those images were broken at the time I visited!

  • I will hold back on judging Adgenta. I will say, though…. I decided to give them a try, signed up for an account and put the Adgenta ad in my next blog post. Like EngLee, the link was broken. It appears that the Adgenta server is really overloaded right now. Everything on their site (except the sign-up) is moving very slow.

    I will try it again in a few days and see if there is any improvement.

  • I just loaded Qumana and Adgent. I added the Agenta ad to one of my blogs that I don’t have any Adsense on it, so that I can see which system works best. I really like Quamana, because I have six blogs and now I can post to all them pretty quickly. I’m pretty familiar with blogger code, so I can add blockquotes if and when I need them. The real test will be when I use it on my popular blog-Christian Fiction.

  • I put the Adgenta ad in my blog post about 15 hours back, but the image link is still broken. I wrote to Tris Hussey of Adgenta who said he could see the image on my blog - that’s strange. Still trying to figure out the problem.

  • i can see it Satish

  • I found the problem why both Satish and I cannot see the ads. I am based in the Philippines, and I believe that Satish is India (based on his profile). It looks like Adgenta is sniffing IP addresses and not serving up the ads to third world countries (or at least not to selected countries). I say this because I also cannot see the advertising on his blog. However, if I use a proxy and go in with a US IP address, the ad is visible.

  • Darren,

    As always a great and thorough review. I really appreciate your support, feedback, and questions.

    I want to directly respond to the revenue split. In our Terms of Service we state that it is a 50/50 split (note to self … this might be something good for a FAQ entry). We’ll also be responding to Darren’s other questions and feedback in a blog post on the Qumana blog soon (http://blog.qumana.com/).


  • Yep, thanks for the review. I am now totally awake. If any mac user out there wants to give us a shot, they can email us and we can provide a link - as of yet it’s not public, since we want to do more testing and work out the little wrinkles - such as the things you mention here!

    As Tris notes, it’s a 50/50 split, and we’re happy with that. It was never actually “removed” from TOS. We were working out legal stuff right up to the last minute, so I actually (yes me) forgot to put it into the FAQ where you can so clearly see I had a mental placeholder! I think it went on one website and not the other.

    Yes - you cannot mass remove. It’s a negative but also a positive. The ads themselves will change based on inventory surrounding the keywords, so they should continue to be profitable.

    Re: AdSense - we are still doing investigations, but think we are ok. Any further individual inquiries can be made to AdSense by each user. For now :)

  • Our smart and amazing developers are working hard on creating a mass-style function that will enable you to shift all styles at once without affecting keywords. Might take some development time ;)

  • I came across qumana earlier this week when I was looking for a blogging client. They seemed pretty interesting, but I was disappointed to see that their ads come through from.

    Go to miva.com and search on your keywords - bids are pretty low for the keys I checked. You’ll be getting 50% of whatever adgenta gets from that bid.

    Looks like an innovative product though, hope it works out for them. Maybe they can get other inventory as well..

  • I came across qumana earlier this week when I was looking for a blogging client. They seemed pretty interesting, but I was disappointed to see that their ads come from miva.

    Go to miva.com and search on your keywords - bids are pretty low for the keys I checked. You’ll be getting 50% of whatever adgenta gets from that bid.

    Looks like an innovative product though, hope it works out for them. Maybe they can get other inventory as well..

  • I can’t comment for legal reasons about actual bid prices, but I can say philisophically Qumana wants bloggers to get the best deal we can. So the more bloggers we have the more leverage we have to get better prices. It’s a process and we are Actively working it.

    Oh and I meant to say that the 50/50 split is IN the TOS.

  • Thanks for the comments everyone - particularly Tris and Arieanna for coming over and giving us some official words of advice.

  • I’m going to give the system a shot, as I downloaded it last night. But before I do, would like to know whether you can mix adgenta ads with adsense on the same site? Is it a wise option? Any advice here would be great.

  • I sent a letter to Google the other day. Received this in return (see paragraph 2)

    Hello Tara,

    We appreciate your following up in this matter. Please note that Google AdSense program policy does not permit Google ads to be published on the same web page as other contextually-targeted ads.

    More broadly, our policy does not permit Google ads to be displayed on the same website as ads that mimic or attempt to be associated with Google ads. According to these program policies, AdGenta ads may be displayed on the same page as Google ads on your site. We do allow affiliate or limited-text links.

    For publishers participating in AdSense for search, please note that we do not allow other search services or query-targeted ads to be displayed on the same site as AdSense for search.

    Our intent with this policy is to be as fair to our advertisers as
    possible and to maintain the integrity of the AdWords and AdSense

    Thank you for your cooperation.

    For additional questions, please visit our AdSense Support site at
    https://www.google.com/support/adsense or feel free to reply to this email if I can be of further assistance.

    We’d also like to encourage you to let us know how we can improve our customer support. Please take a few minutes to fill out our brief survey at http://www.insightexpress.com/s/Google.asp?uid=0&resetposition=true.

    Your input is greatly appreciated.


    The Google AdSense Team

  • […] The WYSIWYG editing mode works well as does adding tags and trackbacks. Also being able to insert Adgenta ads into a post and customize their look on the run is handy if you want to go with them (although I still have a few reservations about using Adgenta personally and use other ads instead). […]

  • Ho, Darren.. another one of the Qumana people here. Re: Adsense and other advertising service offers on the same blog page.. I found it kinda chuckle-inducing to see how Brad Feld, one of the better known VC’s in the Web / Internet / RSS / content etc, area so blatantly flout that *rule*, by having Ads By Yahoo on the left-hand sidebar, and Ads By Gooooogle on the right-hand side.

    I suppose Google’s TOS made him choose the right-hand side (just kidding;-) I don’t think, personally, that Google’s TOS can be enforced whatsoever when it comes to *contextual* advertising.. and certainly Brad doesn’t seem to worried about losing his Google account ;-)

  • Just get myself signup on adgenta. I’m not sure how well it will work out but thought why not give it a try. Great review! Appreciate it alot :)

  • […] Since I never heard of this service before now, I cannot offer any recommendations, but these sites […]

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