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Advertising in the Elsmar Cove Forum - 2015


Captain Nice
Staff member
First, Please review: Elsmar Cove Forum Advertising. I take a simple approach to Advertising in the Elsmar Cove forum.

> We may be interested in advertising - can you give me some indication of
> how many people you reach and how your advertising works/costs etc. How we
> can measure click thru etc.

First: The Cove isn't really a 'for profit' site per se. I know some people think I'm sitting here making a small fortune whilst doing nothing {or next to nothing} according to some emails I have had in the past, but I'm not, especially considering the time I put into maintenance.... Until it's in your hands, and all the 'background' stuff is in your hands, well... I assure you it's not a situation where I sit back, do next to nothing, while 'raking in the bucks'. If you don't believe that, contact me and make me an offer to buy the site....

I make enough to keep the server up and maintained, but I'm not trying to, or wanting to, 'maximize' advertising because I want to maintain a somewhat uncluttered site. As long as the site is paying for its self and its upkeep, I'm a happy camper. It used to just be my 'personal' site with no advertising, but in 2003 it started to become somewhat popular the expenses started getting pretty high, which is why I do take paid advertising now.

How people 'reach' the Elsmar Cove (find the Elsmar Cove):
Ummm, well, from friends and co-workers, from various course instructors to "the boss told me about it", from LinkedIn and from Google {and other search engines}, and from links on other web sites, and from.... Well - Once you register, you can look at peoples profiles and see. Now, that said, a lot of people put 'garbage' in their profile for one reason or another. Sometimes it's a language issue, sometimes a person just doesn't want to say (who knows why anyone would object to letting us know, for example, how they found the site {such as through Google, a co-worker, or whatever}, but some do, apparently).

I don't do 'clicks'.
Advertising in the Elsmar Cove forums is strictly 'Presence' (aka "Branding") advertising. Advertisers can count click throughs by giving me a specific URL for their ad and analyzing their log files for hits to that specific URL. NOTE: I do not guarantee, or promise, any follow through business/sales (aka "conversions").

What Do I Charge for an advertisement slot?
I charge based upon the ad location - Sidebar or Header, but I do not publicly post what I charge for advertisements. Contact me to discuss prices.

1. No annoyingly animated (blinking, flashing or otherwise annoying movement/colour change {flashing} distracting) ads.
2. I take a limited number of advertisements. If the quota is filled, the only option is the waiting list or using Google's AdWords.

NOTE about Numbers: I also have a Google Analytics 'script' on every page. I really don't go there often to look at the data, but since Google is the major source of income for the site I don't mind feeding them the data. And, now and again, I do go there and take a looksie. But, again, my main focus is on how many 'new' people visit, as well as total visits with respect to "numbers".

There is also the option of using Google's AdWords program for advertising. Google's AdWords advertising placements are only on forum discussion threads (two per discussion thread page). I have removed Google AdSense advetisements from all the other forum pages to reduce distraction and improve user experience by serving fewer advertisements.

If you have any questions, you can post them here or you can contact me via PM (see my profile for links).

NOTE 1: Advertising is only sold in 3 month time "blocks" with the option to continue or cancel at any time.
NOTE 2: Advertisers are invoiced at the beginning of their 3 month ad run.
NOTE 3: There is no "ad juggling", in part because that would involve "scripts" that ad blockers can use to block ads. An advertisement shows in the same place all the time. Ad slots are dedicated to one advertiser.
NOTE 4: Header ads show on every forum page. There are some pages in the forums, such as in photo albums, where there is no sidebar so obviously sidebar ads will not show on them. I will probably be adding sidebars to many pages on which they are not currently shown, but not all since a sidebar is simply inappropriate on some pages.
NOTE 5: Links in ads will be "rel=nofollow" unless otherwise requested.


Last edited:

Sidney Vianna

Post Responsibly
Staff member
Re: Advertising in the Elsmar Cove Forum

Marc, congratulations for attracting more advertisers to The Cove. To me, it shows that this website is being more and more recognized as a valuable source for management system professionals, around the World.

NASA might take the same approach...


Captain Nice
Staff member
Re: Advertising in the Elsmar Cove Forum

Well, as you know I didn't want advertising and didn't have any until December 2003. I wish I didn't need advertising. But, sadly that's not the situation.

I have more advertising than I planned for, that's for sure. I haven't sought advertisers. Companies have contacted me, so I can only guess my prices are cheap and they see a potential even if it's name recognition. For starting out as something to do in hotel rooms back when I traveled a lot to what the forum is today, I'm continually surprised at how the Cove has developed and how many people visit these days.

I have tried to be as 'tasteful' as I can with advertisements as regards placement and minimal, slow animations with loops limited to 5. And I'd be lying if I didn't categorize it as a business these days. None the less, as a business this pales in comparison to the ASQ particularly financially and in size.

I also should note that without the regulars who visit and help others, and the moderators and all they do, the forums would be dead. Advertising pays for the costs involved but the people who volunteer their time are what keeps the Cove alive and growing.

As always, my thanks go out to each moderator and each of the 'regulars' for all they do to help out here in the Cove.

Here's a freebie which is proof that over time advertising works:



Captain Nice
Staff member
Elsmar Cove Visitors - 2004 through 2014

Elsmar Historical Traffic as of 12 January 2015

I do not have data from prior to 2004, except a few data points in this old thread:

Because of Google's now constant changes in it's search algorithm, along with the increasing prominence of LinkedIn, Google+, and Facebook, the Elsmar forum has had dramatic changes in search traffic. In addition, in general the number of web sites on the internet has increased dramatically, especially since 2008 making competition significant.

In addition, the way people use the internet these days has changed significantly. I have no idea what the future will bring.

NOTE: Around September - October 2014 I removed all AdSense advertisements except for 2 each in each forum thread - One near the top under the "navbar" and 1 after the first post to eliminate advertisement "clutter".

Starting in 2015 I am accepting a maximum of 8 direct ads - Four in the Header and 4 in the sidebar. Former advertisers will get an email explaing everything later today or tomorrow and will be given preference.



Captain Nice
Staff member
Forum Specific Statistics on 2015-01-21 at 11PM EST

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