Thursday, April 24, 2008

Is Nuffnang ripping us off?

Before the days of Nuffnang ads, most Malaysian and Singaporean bloggers pay little to no attention to monetizing their blogs. Popular bloggers had advertorials, but those small-time bloggers had google ads that pay pittance. Consequently, the average bloggers just didn't care too much about making money through their blogs. End of story.

Then came the founders of Nuffnang (their hard-knock, start-up story had been retold so many times on the net, you can simply google for it).

They had this genius idea of empowering bloggers to be a little bit more productive in bringing in the traffic, because for the first time, we are actually getting paid good money (relatively speaking) for allowing them to display locally relevant ads on our blogs. Even bloggers with less than 10 uniques of sympathetic family readers will get some money. So yippee, life is great!

Now Nuffnang is a year older with thousands of willing sacrificial lambs (Nuffnangers as they call us), it is time we ask some probing questions.

Nuffnang take at least 30% of those ad revenues. The other 70% are shared among the thousands of sacrificial lambs. Those Nuffnanger lambs are the sweat and tears of the whole enterprise. Collectively, we work, toil and blog for Nuffnang's traffic. The most popular amongst us get the biggest slice of that 70%, and the mega popular lambs get special treatment and deals from Nuffnang. These deals are sometimes called advertorials or event invites.

Now don't you think 30% commission is a little steep?

Who decides the 30/70 division anyway? 30% sounds like some arbitrary figure. Okay, Nuffnang operates as a pioneering player and a semi-monopoly in the local net advertising agency, therefore they can call the shot -- right?

To be fair, without them, there won't be any money to begin with. They do the marketing. They do the cold calling. They organise promotional events. They roped in famous bloggers to help promote their business. They have staff to hire. They have expensive offices to maintain (their computers, servers and status). These things aren't free.

But still, is this 30% commission justified? I can't think of another business idea that charge such lofty fee, not a unit trust seller, not a car salesman.

If they say this amount is justified, will Nuffnang make their pay structure more transparent so we all can see who's getting what?

The worst case scenario for them would be when bloggers get disgruntled and form a bloggers' ads union. Collectively it won't be difficult to raise some money, hire an IT member among them and start an ad agency from home (no need rent some more!). Each blogger participant gets equitable sum of money according to their site traffic, minus the cost of getting the ads and hiring the IT service. Budget service and maximum profit margin for all!

Thankfully for Nuffnang shareholders, bloggers are such disorganised bunch, so I can't see the bloggers' ads union happening anytime soon. Sometimes I wonder if Nuffnang purposely created NANGS and DANGS so we all can disagree openly and have major blog war among us, and prevent this bloggers' union from ever happening?

(I also wonder if this Dang King was hired by Nuffnang to dis-unite us?)

Don't you love conspiracy? Or is it a conspiracy?

Reference (updated): “We usually take a 30 per cent cut from the advertisement fees. This way everyone is happy,” Tiah says.

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Blogger C K said...

I have yet to get for the ads as it stops coming after the initial burst... still below $50.

I wonder whether you have got paid yet? Also, may I know where you got the 30% figure from?


April 24, 2008 3:12 AM  
Blogger pinksterz said...

i have no comment about the 30/70 issue but i do realise that the popular bloggers get extra advantage from nuffnang with advertorial and stuff la but not complaining on that also.

but i do agree on the havoc created by innit. too many flamings and bloggers disliking each other in there. haih, i never seen anything like that in pps. haha!

April 24, 2008 3:25 AM  
Anonymous Jayelle said...

It is common knowledge that blog wars bring hefty traffic. As immoral as it is, it brings you monetary benefits(paltry, as you mentioned) and as well as Nuffnang.

However, I don't see why you're grumbling about the 70% shared by thousands of sacrificial lambs.

You make it sound like using your blog to put up one 200x400 javascript advertisement takes a lot of effort from you. The people at Nuffnang are the ones who work many hours a day to include all of us in their network. We are just bloggers who choose to blog what we want. The ads are just a square box at the side that generates some pocket money for us, big or small.

April 24, 2008 4:17 AM  
Anonymous 3POINT8 said...

Blogger union? Is that even necessary?
I mean, I do know of groups of bloggers who are good friends to each other. Well, even if there is a blog union, i'm sure there are people out there to support it

April 24, 2008 5:17 AM  
Anonymous WishBoNe said...

I don't know about the 30/70 for Nuffnang. But I've been using a few methods to monetise my blogs and the only one I know that is using 30/70 is Linkworth. I get paid 70% for whatever I have been given per task.

April 24, 2008 6:54 AM  
Anonymous Leslie said...

if you look around all ad networks commission of ad networks finding ads for you goes from 30%-50%. if nuffnang is really taking 30% then it is quite generous. personally i think 30% is considered really low. if nuffnang brings in $1,000,000 a year, 30% is $300,000 for nuffnang. $300,000 to pay for their staff costs, server costs, office rent, phone bill etc for a year i'm surprised they make any money at all.

then again it is a business choice if you feel you earn more elsewhere then go ahead and switch

April 24, 2008 8:43 AM  
Anonymous SloppyChic said...

well, those who get the bigger pie of share are those who are popular, and the rest of us are just peanuts who complete the whole community...

April 24, 2008 9:13 AM  
Blogger ~YM~ said...

30% is really low, cos if u compared to those 'charity' organization, they take up to 90% and give the 10% to charity. And mind you, that 10% is after all expenses had been deducted. -.-"

Seriously, what you are thinking of is sometimes like the boss and worker thinking. The worker always think "I work so hard for the boss, how come I got so little pay? I earn millions for the boss, and this meagre pay of my salary is too little la"

If you have a blogger union, even the rep may not know how to get ads. If that rep had learnt it, he'll be dissatisfied and he may tried to get a higher share for himself from the ads as well.

April 24, 2008 9:40 AM  
Anonymous 5xmom said...

Eh friend, the US companies take 50% cut from the things I do. E.g. TLA, RM. And the rest SR and others also take 30% cut as well. So, how can 30% be steep? You think Nuffnang charitable bodies for the needy blogger meh? Business is like that mah. If you can find any company that gives better, let me know? I also want to join!

April 24, 2008 9:47 AM  
Blogger KY said...

A company like Nuffnang doesn't run on air. There are programmers, markerters, admin people to be paid. Then you have the servers capable of handling huge number of advertisements across the whole network. All those costs money.

Payperpost takes 50% cut without actually having marketing people, the same goes with Textlinkads, 50%. Google Adsense doesn't even publish their commission rate, and if speculations are to be trusted, they take a lot more than 50%.

The 30%, if your number is correct, is a very small and well deserved rate for Nuffnang.

I hope you're not doing this just to gain traffic.

April 24, 2008 9:47 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

better do your research before blasting :P

April 24, 2008 1:30 PM  
Blogger Sisuahlai said...

will respond to each comment in the next post. thanks for commenting.

April 24, 2008 2:40 PM  
Blogger Mc_Bone said...

its business

and u "worked" for nuffnang to update YOUR blog ka?
nuffnang got give u deadline for u 2 submit your post one ka?
hebat lor .

if u never tell, i thought u signed up for nuffnang one

April 24, 2008 5:59 PM  
Blogger naeboo~ said...

30% only?

but i know la standard modeling /fashion commission is 20-30% also ley.

im sure it's more than that if they r earning any money.

like i said, it's business, it has to make money to be profitable. and i dont see any reason why it needs to be transparent. if u think ur blog is worth more if u look for ads on ur own, it's better to go and get it urself then, wont it?

setting whatever percentage is up to any business' discretion. how much is an ipod worth at cost price? how much markup u think u r paying for it? surely more than 30%.

and btw, quite stupid lar the innit dont have search by blogger feature or search by word. all tags nia.

April 24, 2008 6:00 PM  
Anonymous Gary said...

And the nuffnang rescue brigade all fall in here ka?

Nuff said about Nuffnang. People who had followed news know what they're made of. Ultimately if there is one case, two case, three case etc etc of bitching of the same nature from different bloggers, know what i mean..right?

April 24, 2008 9:31 PM  
Blogger LLY said...

I think 30% is very low as compared to the market rate of 30~50%. But I still think they should scrap the $1 admin fee for each cashout.

April 24, 2008 10:33 PM  
Anonymous the(new)mediaslut said...

Don't like Nuffnang?

You have a choice to take them out of your blog.

I am not pro-nuffnang or anti, but if you think a biz is ripping you off, don't support it, period.

April 24, 2008 11:07 PM  

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