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The Year of Mobile and Search


By Nick Aquino, Director of Client Services

The IAB 2013 Internet Advertising Revenue Report is out and Mobile stole the show. In case you were too busy mourning the death of your NCAA bracket last week, here are the highlights: Mobile revenue grew 110% from 2012 and now commands 17% of all internet ad revenue. However, there is one important detail in the report worth noting: mobile search revenue is counted towards mobile, not search. When the mobile search revenue is added to Search, Search commands almost half of all internet ad revenue and is the 2nd fastest growing format, behind the rest of mobile. Internet traffic and revenue is moving to mobile and search is once again leading the way. 

With almost 25% of all page views coming from mobile, publishers are facing new challenges to monetizing content. Search is effectively capturing the revenue that is moving to mobile. To add insult to injury, Google is finding new ways to provide users with content rather than pointing them to it. Publishers need new strategies to effectively monetize the growing share of mobile page views while internet ad revenue continues to shift to search.

The move to mobile poses new challenges for advertisers as well. For starters, the page, or “target”, got smaller. For the sake of user-experience and humanity, ads cannot be sprayed across the mobile screen the way they are across many sites on the non-mobile web. This means less impression opportunities per page view. The opportunities that advertisers do get need to be as effective as possible. In other words, put the shotgun away and hire a sniper.

In an open letter recently published by the IAB, some of the biggest publishers in the market called the current offering of mobile ads “inept” and “one-dimensional”.  The open letter called for advertisers to develop mobile creative with HTML5. The letter argues that ads built with HTML5 are significantly more captivating. HTML5 also allows for responsive design, which is absolutely necessary in a mobile experience. 

Swoop offers solutions to the array of challenges that both publishers and advertisers face in a rapidly evolving market place. For publishers, Swoop extends search campaigns to your content across all devices. This means you can tap into growing search budgets and effectively monetize mobile page views.

For advertisers, the Swoop technology carefully optimizes the targeting and placement of each ad. This means more effective ad spend on the mobile and non-mobile web. All Swoop creative is developed with HTML5 and is responsive across all platforms. The target got smaller and the stakes got higher. Rest assured knowing that Swoop is the sharp shooter you need.


 Recognized for innovation, value, and impact.
BOSTON, MA April 11, 2014 – Swoop today announced it has has been selected as a finalist in the Most Innovative Ad Technology category for the MITX What’s Next Awards. This year MITX combined its annual Innovation and Interactive Awards into a single show recognizing Boston’s entire digital ecosystem.
Since 1996 the MITX Award shows have grown to become the largest and most prestigious awards competitions in the country for marketing innovations, celebrating the best creative and technological accomplishments emerging from New England. 
“The finalists that emerged from an unprecedented number of submissions received for this year’s MITX What’s Next Awards demonstrate the creativity and innovation of our region’s rich digital ecosystem,” says MITX Board Member and Communispace Chief Operating Officer Howard Kogan, who serves as Chairman of the MITX What’s Next Awards Advisory Committee. “From startups to large corporations and everything in between, the individuals behind this work continue to raise the bar for the entire digital community.”
Swoop allows Search Advertisers to directly extend their Google Adwords campaigns to any piece of digital content, on any device.  Swoop’s patent pending technology is unique in both; its ability to extract search queries from content, and to create virtual ad slots within the content in order to insert search ads once a query match is found.  The result is that Swoop is the only technology that allows advertisers to directly run Google AdWords campaigns in content.  The result is the opening of massive new inventory of high quality search terms for advertisers, and providing publishers access to the billions of dollars of advertising spent on Search Engines.  
“We’re exited to be recognized by MITX in the Most Innovative Ad Technology category,” says Ron Elwell Founder and CEO of Swoop.  “The team at Swoop has a mission to make the web a better place by; giving users access to the most relevant sponsored content using far fewer pixels than any adtech player trafficking IAB units, by providing advertisers the higher ROI and engagement they have come to expect from search, and by helping publishers tap previously inaccessible search advertising budgets."
Swoop will be recognized with the other finalists in the category of Most Innovative Ad Technology at a gala awards ceremony traditionally attended by over 1,000 of the region’s top interactive marketing and technology professionals. Winners will be announced at a ceremony at the Westin Waterfront Hotel on May 29th. Tickets can be purchased at 
The 2014 MITX Awards are sponsored by: HavasMedia, Miller systems, PwC, tripadvisor, Bingham, Cassidy Turley, SapientNitro, Atom Group
About  Swoop
Swoop is a search advertising company that allows the extension of Google AdWords campaigns to any content on any device.  Swoop’s patent pending technology allows for the extraction of search queries from content, and for the creation of virtual ad slots within the content wherever a search match is found.   Founded by a team with deep experience in web publishing, advertising technology and consumer marketing, Swoop is located in Cambridge, Massachusetts.   For more information visit us at 
About MITX
Established in 1996, MITX -- the Massachusetts Innovation & Technology Exchange -- is the leading industry organization focused on the web and mobile, bringing together the digital marketing, media and technology community to engage in what's next and how it will impact the marketing and business worlds. Connecting more than 7,500 professionals in New England, MITX is a dynamic community of thought leaders and collaborators in search of insight, education and opportunity. Creator of FutureM, MITX is headquartered in Boston, MA. For more information, visit

Carrie Page
617-871-2155 ext. 708  
Ron Elwell

The Banner Ad is Dead (well kind of)


By Ron Elwell, CEO

A big thank you goes out to Google for killing the experiment they were running that put large banner ads on search results.  Granted, the reason they killed them was likely due to the fact that they couldn’t turn them into a significant new revenue stream. But, we’ll take the elimination of yet another annoying interruption of our Internet experience as a victory nonetheless.  Now, if only there was a way to get rid of the other 5 trillion (no kidding – 5 trillion!) banner ads we could make the Internet a better place! 

But take heart, we’re working on it!


The Great Void between Search and Everything Else


By Ron Elwell, CEO 

With over 50% of every digital dollar going to search, Marketers have indicated with their wallets that placement on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP) is the most effective form of digital advertising.   In fact, the nearly insatiable demand for search advertising is such that search spend would further dwarf other forms of digital advertising if there was more inventory. great void

Today the gap between search, and the next most effective channels, is wide and frustrating to marketers.  Targeting becomes less precise: keyword and phrase matching gives way to content targeting, demographic targeting, or e-commerce retargeting.  Click through rates plummet, and, more importantly, post click engagement falls to a fraction of that seen on the SERP.

Swoop has endeavored to fill this Great Void. We offer ad solutions that fall within this waste land between high-performing Search Advertising, and the world of low CTR, Banner Blindness and low conversion that is the world of all standard display ad formats and targeting.  How do we do this?

First, we use true SERP targeting.  The same proven targeting that has been developed and refined over the past 12 years by every major advertiser.  The Swoop Search Engine indexes every content page, mobile or web, and simply finds more of the best performing search terms.

Second, we use precise placement.  Finding the search term is only half the battle.  If you place the ad in a standard IAB unit, in a spot pre-determined by the publisher, all the effectiveness of the targeting is lost.   It is the dynamic placement of the search ad, within the content and immediately adjacent to the search term, that provides the reader with the information they are looking for, at the exact moment of interest, in a location where they can easily take action.

The result is an ad solution that fills The Great Void between search and everything else.  Maybe not as effective as the best search terms on SERP, but a dramatic improvement on both marginal search terms as well as any AdSense placement. 

If you would like to enjoy 5X improvement over your Adsense offering, just drop us a line at


Benefiting from the Shift to Mobile


By Ron Elwell, CEO

Being a web publisher is full of challenges.   Falling CPM’s, audience retargeting and duplicative content are all continuing threats to profitability.  Now we can add to the list of challenges a rapid shift to content consumption on mobile devices.  As page views move from web to mobile, the user experience demands fewer and smaller ad units on each page, further driving down revenue per page.   Almost universally felt among the publishers we talk to is lament that mobile CPMs are even less than web CPMs.  And with the constraints of the device there is even less opportunity to creatively explore new monetization strategies.

However, recent developments have made search advertising a great opportunity for mobile publishers. Google’s move to Enhanced Campaigns effectively eliminated the differentiation between the desktop and mobile device, with the net effect being a dramatic increase in search revenue directed to mobile.   Now publishers can take advantage of that shift with Swoop, and capture these incremental dollars. 

Like Google, the Swoop Search Engine is device agnostic.  Our ability to extract keyword matches from content and insert new search ads directly into content after the page has loaded, works as seamlessly on mobile web as it does on desktop.   And best of all, the advertising rates are the same on mobile as they are on desktop.  Of course any Swoop search ad is incremental to every other ad unit or monetization strategy you have on mobile.  So why not take advantage of your growing mobile traffic and tap into the 50%-of-every-digital-dollar that goes to search?  Just drop us a line at and we’d be happy to show you how.

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Swoop News - The Latest from the World of Search


By Ron Elwell, Founder and CEO

In any round up of search news, a change made to the core Google search algorithm would have to lead the way.   But in the case of Google Hummingbird, this was not a change, but rather a completely new, built-from-scratch algorithm.  This is rather old news now, the change being announced 3 months ago. Nonetheless, it is a good time to look back on it, outside some of the hysteria that accompanied the announcement, to see what effect it has had.   First, make no mistake; this is the biggest change Google has made in over a decade.  The company admits that Hummingbird affects 90% of all searches, whereas Panda, the last big change, affected 10%.  It also seems clear that the core desire here is to improve search results.  After all, the SERP is the golden goose of digital advertising, so it is only in Google’s interest to protect and improve that however they can.  It does seem that one of the fundamental changes in the engine, the Semantic search capability, is creating opportunities for Google on two fronts.  First, semantic search opens up more matches on the long tail.  Given that Google’s search advertising business is inventory constrained, this opens up new inventory and over the long term should help boost revenue.  Second, the semantic underpinnings of the algorithm are a necessity for a great voice-driven search experience.  The ability to parse natural or conversational speech into a search query is at the core of Hummingbird.  Given the increasing importance of mobile to Google, it seems like a natural next step necessary to protect the franchise.

Speaking of mobile…. According to a report issued by Kenshoo, retailers increased their spend on search advertising by 34% this Holiday Season.  This increase was primarily driven by a 67% increase in spend on mobile devices.   Given the growth in smartphone use, and the phone’s proximity to purchase, this is no surprise. 

Did you see that?  Probably not….  Yet another article was released about the view-ability – or lack there of – of digital ads.  Only 46% of all ads meet the IAB view-ability standard.  And that standard is weakly defined as ½ the ad being viewable for 1 second.  It would be fascinating (or maybe depressing) to see what view-ability statistics would be if the definition was 100% of the ad being viewable for 2 or 3 seconds. 

And Finally; Swoop is proud to announce the first Mobile Product Listing Ad.  Combining the intimacy of a PLA (image, description and price) with the proximity of purchase offered by mobile, advertisers can now enjoy the same benefits and ROI that you get from a Google PLA on mobile.

Happy Searching! 


Swoop News - Introducing the Mobile PLA


By Ron Elwell, Founder & CEO

According to a report issued by Kenshoo, retailers increased their spend on search advertising by 34% this Holiday Season.  This increase was driven by two trends.  First was a 67% increase in spend on search on mobile devices.   Given the growth in the use of smartphones, and the phone’s proximity to purchase, this is no surprise.  Second was a 417% increase in spending on Product Listing Ads (PLAs).  The reason for this is simply that PLAs perform better than traditional paid search ads, with 27% higher CTR at 15% less cost per click. 

So it is no surprise that advertisers who want to bring the intimacy of the PLA (image, description and price) together with the proximity of purchase offered by mobile, have been looking to mobile PLAs as a powerful new marketing tool.

To support this new trend, Swoop is proud to announce its Mobile PLA.  Driven by the same search terms that you use on your current PLA campaign, Swoop simply discovers these terms within the content of a mobile site and dynamically inserts the PLA into the stream of content.  You can see an example of this in action below.


To learn more about what mobile PLAs can do for your business contact us at


Mobile PLA

Swoop on Xconomy: "Taking a Cue from Google"


Read about us on Xconomy! 

Swoop: Taking a Cue from Google to Make Web Ads Suck Less, Pay More

The Complexity of the Digital Advertising Ecosystem


By Ron Elwell, CEO

There has been a lot of talk about the complexity of the current Digital Advertising Ecosystem. The Lumascape is often used to illustrate the messy nature of the interconnections and various companies necessary to implement a simple display ad.  But that doesn’t begin to describe how out-of-control the entire process has become.  If you would like a more technical view of what is required to place one annoying ad, that will get a 0.09% click through rate, than I suggest you read this terrific blog post by our co-founder and CTO.

Once you read that I am sure you will understand why Swoop chooses to operate outside of the entire ecosystem and provide a single end-to-end solution.  It’s the only way to provide efficiency, transparency and accountability. And it’s the best way to achieve the accurate targeting and placement required to deliver true search advertising into the content ecosystem. 

If you would like to learn more about how Swoop can extend your search campaign please contact us at

Swoop News - Swoop Extends Search Advertising Solution to Finance Vertical


Swoop Extends Search Advertising Solution to Finance Vertical

Swoop, the leading content search advertising company, has now extended its solution to the Finance Vertical.   This means search advertisers in the brokerage, banking, credit card, mortgage, and insurance markets now have access to significant amounts of new search inventory, all accessible with the same proven targeting being used on AdWords.

Swoop works with the leading financial web and mobile sites to allow search advertisers to extend current search campaigns using their existing search creative.  Now a user who clicked on an organic result, or directly navigated to a site is no longer a lost opportunity.   Swoop targets micro segments of the content, extracting exact search matches.  Once a match is identified Swoop inserts a new search ad directly into the content, adjacent to the match.  For example this means that in a typical finance article search matches may be found for “best credit cards for points”, “home re-financing” and “free checking”.  In this case three separate search ads would be inserted into the content, each with its own unique call to action, each driving to the appropriate advertiser content. 

If you would like to learn more about how Swoop can extend your search campaign please contact us at

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