PayPerPost Launches Random New Service. They're Up To Something, I'm Sure.

We heard about a new service from PayPerPost today, and while it’s a little boring, there is nothing about it that I can take particular issue with at first blush (we often find things to criticize with PayPerPost – our past posts are here).

Like the popular site TinyURL, URLbrief lets people exchange a long, difficult to communicate URL for a short one. They’ve added a couple of bells and whistles – The URL creator can link to multiple destination URLs and visitors are taken to one of the links randomly when they click. Also, users can see stats on how many clicks the link is getting and browser data on the people clicking.

The service seems completely unrelated to the main business of PayPerPost, which pays bloggers to write posts about advertisers.

But…and I’m thinking out loud here: Those posts always include links back to the advertiser, so perhaps they will use URLbrief to direct that traffic. This seems counter intuitive, since advertisers want the links to go directly to them. But rumor has it that Google has been trying to find ways to penalize PPP blogger links. Perhaps this is a way to minimize any collateral search engine damage from direct links. The stats feature of URLbrief also provides good, verifiable data back to PPP as to how many people click the links, which may help them monetize advertisers more effectively.

Who knows. No conspiracy theory is too outlandish when it comes to this company. All I know is, they’re up to something, I’m sure. There are way too many services out there just like this, and there is absolutely no revenue model around this service. Their blog post on the new product is here.