Meebo, a popular web-based chat service, has announced that it is going to extend its successful advertising platform to include the growing number of partners that are deploying its Community IM product, which launched last year.
Last summer Meebo launched interactive social ads on its main chat portal at meebo.com, presenting users with small icons at the bottom of their chat windows that would display a popup when clicked (users can also share the ads they especially like with their friends). A number of major corporations have run campaigns using the unique advertising platform, and so far Meebo is posting impressive results: the company says that it has seen an average 1% CTR with 10% of chat users sharing ads with their online buddies.
Now Meebo is ready to extend its successful ad platform to its partners that are using Community IM, Meebo’s chat product that allows web publishers to implement persistent browser-based chat clients on their websites (it’s akin to Facebook Chat). Ads will be displayed in the chat bar at the bottom of the browser (see the screenshot below) and will expand when the user clicks on the small icon shown. Community IM sites participate in a rev share agreement with Meebo, and will be able to use ads from Meebo’s inventory or from their own.
Alongside the announcement, Meebo has also revealed a handful of new partner sites that will be deploying Community IM, including CafeMom, StarPulse, IGN, Current TV, CrispyGamer, DailyStrength.org, GGL Global Gaming, and Internet Brands (over 40 partners have now announced plans to integrate the product into their sites, though some are taking their time).
One of the concerns often brought up about Meebo, especially after its $25 million funding round last year, is how the site plans to generate revenue. The initial results of the new ad platform on meebo.com have been encouraging, and if partner sites continue to see similarly impressive results, Community IM could well turn into a very lucrative product for the company.