Ahmad Shah Sultani
M.Sc. Computer Science
South Asian University, New Delhi
Types of Advertising
Business Models in Comp. Advertising
• Advertising is a form of marketing communication used to
encourage, persuade, or manipulate an audience (viewers,
readers or listeners; sometimes a specific group) to take or
continue to take some action.
Egyptians used papyrus to make sales messages and wall
posters, date back to 4000 BC.
In ancient China, the earliest advertising known was oral, as
recorded in the Classic of Poetry (11th to 7th centuries BC) of
bamboo flutes played to sell candy.
In Europe, as the towns and cities of the Middle Ages began to
grow, and the general populace was unable to read, instead of
signs that read "cobbler", "miller", "tailor", or "blacksmith"
would use an image associated with their trade such as a boot, a
suit, a hat, a clock, a diamond, a horse shoe, a candle or even a
bag of flour.
In the 18th century advertisements started to appear in weekly
newspapers in England.
A Coca-Cola advertisement
from the 1890s
A 1900 advertisement for
On the radio from the 1920s
Public service advertising in WW2
Commercial television in the 1950s
Media diversification in the 1960s
Cable television from the 1980s
On the Internet from the 1990s
Types of Advertising
Television advertising / Music in advertising
Mobile billboard advertising
Coffee cup advertising
Advertising that involves a "direct response”: buy,
subscribe, vote, donate, etc, now or soon
The Advertising Market
Internet advertising is a business that is growing faster than old media
advertising (radio, TV, newspapers & magazines, mail, outdoors)
Online advertising budgets still lagging in proportion to time spent online, which
is growing fast at the expense of old media.
Seen as a driver to continued growth of online advertising market
–Few, expensive opportunities
–Targeting en-masse, by immediate context only
–Difficult to measure effectiveness
–Billions of opportunities daily
–Open to personalization via rich context of impression
–Effectiveness is measurable: can measure click-through rates as % of
impressions, and conversions as % of clicks
Lots of computational this and that …
All are about mixing an old science with large scale computing
What’s computational about it?
Relatively few venues –magazines, billboards, newspapers, handbills, TV,
High cost per venue ($3Mil for a Super Bowl TV ad)
No personalization possible
Targeting by the wisdom of ad-people
Computational –almost the exact opposite:
Billions of opportunities
Billions of creatives
Tiny cost per opportunity
Much more quantifiable
New scientific sub-discipline, at the intersection of
large scale search and text analysis:
information retrieval: query-ad selection, learning-to-rank.
machine learning: clustering, classification and regression.
optimization: linear, integer, convex optimization.
microeconomics: game theory, mechanism design, auction
Find the "best match" between a given user in a
given context and a suitable advertisement.
Context = Web search results Sponsored search
Context = Publisher page Content match, banners
Other contexts: mobile, video, newspapers, etc.
Participants: Publishers, Advertisers, Users, &
The publisher is the owner of Web pages on which
advertising is displayed.
The advertiser provides the supply of ads.
The ad network is a mediator between the advertiser
and the publisher, who selects the ads that are put on
End-users visit the Web pages of the publisher and
interact with the ads.
Three main types of textual Web advertising:
1. Sponsored search which serves ads in response to
2. Content match which places ads on third-party
3. Display advertising (banner ads)
Ads are information!
context: a user issues a query.
publishers: Google (AdWords), Bing (AdCenter),
max: publisher revenue, s.t. advertiser campaign goal,
budget, user satisfaction.
marketplace: keyword-based GSP with cost-per-click
system sketch: query analysis ad selection and
relevance click prediction GSP.
contextual ads: an extension of sponsored search;
context: page content and user behaviour.
publishers: content providers, and major search engines
operate the marketplace.
system sketch: starts with keyword extraction in
absence of user query.
Display Ads (Banner Ads)
context: page, application and user behaviour.
publishers: content providers in display ad-networks operated
by Google (doubleclick), Microsoft (aquantive), and Yahoo!
two types of display ads:
1. reserved: delivery guaranteed, contracts negotiated upfront,
pricing based on CPM (cost-per-(k)impression), e.g., brand ads,
2. performance-based: max publisher revenue, s.t. advertiser
budget, real-time bidding on exchange, pricing based on CPC/CPA
Search Advertising Business Models
CPM (Cost Per Thousand) or Cost per Impression
– Advertisers pay for exposure of their message to a specific audience. (M in the
acronym is the Roman numeral for one thousand)
Typically used for graphical/banner ads (brand advertising)
CPC (Cost Per Click) aka Pay per click (PPC)
– Advertisers pay every time a user clicks on their listing and is redirected to their
Typically used for textual ads
CPA (Cost Per Action) or (Cost Per Acquisition)
– The publisher takes all the risk of running the ad, and the advertiser pays only
for the amount of users who complete a transaction, such as a purchase or sign-up.
Typically used for shopping (“buy from our sponsors”), travel, etc.
Computational advertising = A principled way to find the "best match“
between a given user in a given context and a suitable advertisement.
Two main types of online advertising are graphical and textual
Sponsored search is the main channel for textual advertising on the web
Advertising is a form of information.
Adding ads to a context is similar to the integration problem of other types of
Finding the “best ad” is a type of information retrieval problem with multiple,
possibly contradictory utility functions.
New application domains and new techniques are emerging every day
Good area for research + new businesses.
Many active research areas & open
named entity extraction
economics of ads
Computational Advertising course @ Stanford:
Internet Advertising and the Generalized Second-Price
Auction: Selling Billions of Dollars Worth of Keywords,
Edelman, Ostrovsky and Schwartz
From query based Information Retrieval to context driven
Information Supply, Andrei Broder
Just in time contextual advertising, Anagnostopoulos et al.
Internet Advertising and Optimal Auction Design, Schwarz