Aol Trades Patents For Cash; Reviewing The Click – CPC, RPC, Do Re Mi

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$1 Billion In Cash

“Hey look at you, Aol. Flush with $1 billion in cash… Gonna buy something?” Yesterday, Aol’s cash balance just got a whole lot fatter (and so did the company’s stock) as Aol announced the sale of “800 patents related to advertising, search, e-commerce and mobile,” according to Reuters which says Amazon, eBay, Google and Facebook were involved in the auction process. Read it. And, read the release. On All Things D, Peter Kafka’s sleuthing reveals that the patent sale to Microsoft included assets from a long forgotten purchase of Netscape. Read more.

Ad Tech Check

Reflecting on its first year of existence, The Council for Accountable Advertising (AdExchanger Q&A 2011) says that its members have enjoyed a year of success and points to acquisitions of TARGUSinfo by Neustar and Admeld by Google among others. Looking ahead, the Council’s Stephen Messer says that milestones to be achieved include “Standardized data integration guidelines, Universal API, and Interoperability for marketers…” Read the blog post.

More Patent Wars

With Millennial Media flush with its own buckets of cash after a successful Initial Public Offering, Augme Technologies has announced that it will sue Millennial for violating its patents. According to Augme’s press release, “Augme is asserting three causes of action involving patent infringement related to Augme-owned United States Patent No. 7,783,721 (“Method and Code Module for Adding Function to a Web Page”), United States Patent No. 7,269,636 (“Method and Code Module For Adding Function to a Web Page”) and United States Patent No. 6,594,691 (“Method and System for Adding Function to a Web Page”).” Read it.

CPC Google

Wall Street’s obsession with Google’s Cost-Per-Click decrease last quarter is raised again by The Wall Street Journal in advance of Google’s coming, Q1 2012 earnings release. Read it. (subscription) The WSJ’s John Letzing writes, “In January, Google executives said there had been a number of reasons for the decline in prices paid for clicks, noting that more clicks on Google ads is a good thing, even if it does lower prices for advertisers.”

RPC Pinterest

In an opinion piece on VentureBeat, Convertro CEO Jeff Zwilling says his company’s attribution data is impressive revenue per click from social media darling Pinterest. He offers, “In Q2 2011 represented 1.2% of social media revenue for e-commerce sites. It now represents 17.4% and is quickly gaining on Facebook. (That shift from 1.2% to 17.4% is based on measurements we made across 40 of our client sites — most of which are top 500 internet retailers.)” Read more.

Clickity, Click

On ClickZ, Adnetik COO Nathan Woodman unearths the comScore/Starcom study on “natural born” clickers and then reveals results from a recent study of his own. Woodman writes, “In a sample of 200,000 random clickers taken in March 2012, I found that 40 percent of the clicks were produced by 20 percent of the clickers. This data suggests there is substantial bias to a macro segment that can be described as frequent display ad clickers.” The clicker audience! Read about it.

Digits Do The Walking

AT&T has less interest in the Yellow Pages than it used to as it was announced that a private equity firm would take 53% ownership in the Yellow Pages. The Los Angeles Times reports, “That leaves AT&T with 47% ownership of the new entity, which includes the website, the YP advertising network, a related mobile app as well as the hard-copy books.” The entire entity is worth about $1.4 billion. Read more about an old school, end-to-end, offline-to-online solution.

You’re Hired!

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By John Ebbert

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