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On March 7, 2011 Skype officially launched their new advertising program with some of the world’s most premier brands. This will be the first time ads will appear on Skype, giving brands a unique opportunity to be part of Skype’s video experience.
Among the first advertisers will be Groupon, Nokia, VISA, and Universal. The Home page ad unit will measure 650 X 170 and will expand to 650 X 340. It will also include the ability to embed audio and video. Advertisers can add a Click & Call button in the ads as another call to action, and users can share ads to their Facebook or Twitter accounts and also close ads with one click.
When asked why they chose to start adding advertising, Skype CEO Doug Bewsher said, “The user experience on Skype is always job number one. So, we’ve spent a lot of time working through the best way to show advertising in the Skype environment. We believe our daily sponsorship ad from one brand per day is valuable for premier advertisers, but doesn’t detract from the experience for our users. We are just taking our first steps in this space and we expect to test and learn a lot as we move forward.”
In the fourth quarter of 2010, Skype saw 145 million average monthly connected users and 29 million concurrent users. This platform will enable millions of people around the world to do things together when they’re apart through voice and video calling, instant messaging, conferencing, and more.
What do you think of Skype’s new advertising? Smart move? Well, being that it has been estimated that advertising could bring the company $200 million in annual revenues – I’d say so!
If you’re interested in advertising on Skype, start here: Advertising on Skype. They partner with Meebo for the US, Ad2One in the UK, and Ströer Interactive in Germany. It will be interesting to see their pricing and if this will be a viable alternative for small businesses.