Skypes managed Emarketing efforts
Skype has revealed that it is now rolling out advertising on the Windows version of its popular business VoIP offering, presenting managed emarketing.
Business VoIP takes new direction with Skype advertising
Wednesday, March 09 2011 by Steve Swallow
Skype has this week revealed that it will begin rolling out advertising on the Windows version of its popular VoIP-based communications service over the coming days.
Ads from businesses including Visa, Groupon and Universal Pictures will appear on the home tabs of users. Skype began piloting the additions over the past couple of months and will continue to test them as it rolls out advertisements on a wider scale. The US, UK and Germany will be their primary targets for now.
“We believe that advertising, when done in the right way, will help us continue to invest in developing great products,” said chief marketing officer for Skype Doug Bewsher. “The Skype experience is paramount and we are committed to learning as we go, continuing to evolve the offer for advertisers and to developing great products that enable you to connect whenever you’re apart.”
He added that the managed emarketing campaign would not interrupt Skype experiences, such as “annoying pop-up ads or flashy banner ads in middle of conversations”. Non-personally identifiable information including gender, age, and location will combine with advertising to ensure users see ads that appeal to them.
Yet while many users have supported advertising on Skype’s free product, they did not want them on the paid service – an idea that Spotify uses to shore up its reasons for subscription to its music service. However, the blog post on the Skype site left this point open, not addressing whether ads would be limited to the gratis option.
Information Week believes that Skype’s managed emarketing could provide a good opportunity for other business VoIP services including Google Voice, Vopium, Vonage, Truphone, and Nimbuzz to come through. It picked up a quote from Skype user Urania-arg, who put on the company blog: “Good to know – I’m never updating Skype again. If you prevent earlier versions from connecting, I’m switching to GTalk/Google Voice. Permanently.”
This week, Spotify’s paid-for service reached one million users, showing the popularity of an unlimited service that people want to listen to without the burden of advertising.
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