A long article in Adweek examines how advertisers and media buyers consider the value of pageviews and uniques when deciding on where to place the bulk of their ad dollars. Eventually, Adweek says, it will come down to defining engagement and figuring out the value of word of mouth on the web. But right now, uniques rule in the minds of decision-makers, who bank on traditional media measurements like CPMs. Adweek wonders whether the trend in pageviews might affect the equation. Since pageviews for sites that rely on some form of user-content and social networking functions are outpacing traditional media brands, shouldn’t advertisers and media buyers follow the eyeballs and devote a proportionate number of ad dollars toward MySpace and its competitors? The turning point occurred back in November, as comScore Media Metrix showed that, for the first time, pageviews for News Corp.’s Fox Interactive Media outstripped those of Yahoo’s (due mostly to FIM’s inclusion of MySpace). While Yahoo’s pageviews dropped 9 percent decline to 38 billion, FIM rose 2 percent to 39.5 billion. The difference grew in December, with FIM posting 41.5 billion pageviews, while Yahoo trailed with less than 36 billion.
But Adweek doesn’t expect the shift in ad dollars to follow pageview trends just yet. One reason is the ratio of unique visitors to pageviews. An average visitor to MySpace during December cycled through 500 pages of content and spent one hour and 52 minutes on the site, according to data from Adweek-sibling Nielsen NetRatings. The typical Yahoo user