Mac Musings

Dell Ads on Low End Mac?

Daniel Knight - 2000.11.18 -

I've received a fair bit of email over the past week that has nothing to do with the editorial content of Low End Mac. Instead, these folks wondered what the heck Dell ads were doing on our site.

Separation of Church and State

In publishing, we usually try to separate editorial content from ads. We do that at Low End Mac. In fact, we don't even have our own ad department - all that's very ably handled by BackBeat Media.

It's a mutually beneficial relationship. They sell the ads, run the ad server, send out the bills, collect funds, and split the proceeds with us. They make money. We make money. And we don't have to sell the ads or deal with collections. It's worth splitting ad income to avoid those headaches, besides which it's not an area we're particularly good at.

The only guidelines I have for BackBeat are that I only want family friendly ads on my site. No porn, which BackBeat wouldn't do to begin with. And no online gambling sites - I believe too many people have lost too much that way, and most people believe the online gambling sites aren't fair. Except for the time we did get involved with an online casino campaign, things have gone very well. And even in that instance, the sponsor was willing to accommodate our wishes.

Dell on Low End Mac

How in the world did Dell ads end up on Low End Mac? I'm not really sure, since a lot of the campaigns BackBeat sells cover a whole family of ads.

Do I object to Dell ads on Low End Mac? Not at all. If Dell wants to help underwrite the costs of this site, it's fine with me. I expect they get a pretty poor click-through rate, though. After all, only 42% of the folks visiting Low End Mac are doing so from Windows computers, and most of them would rather be on Macs.

In the end, I got a real chuckle out of Dell running banner ads on this site. We have not sold out to the enemy, but we're more than happy to take his money.

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Dan Knight has been using Macs since 1986, sold Macs for several years, supported them for many more years, and has been publishing Low End Mac since April 1997. If you find Dan's articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.

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