In a major magazine publisher first, Condé Nast launched a private advertising exchange for select digital clientele. Partnering with service provider AdMeld, inventory from Condé’s entire digital portfolio was available at the time of the exchange’s launch.

Retailers eBay and Macy’s were confirmed as ad exchange partners at time of launch (which grants the companies ongoing automated access to the platform), with Armani and an auto company completing the debut group. In January 2012, select advertisers who commit to an increased digital spend with the publisher will be invited to participate in the exchange.

Drew Schutte, EVP/CIO of Condé Nast Media Group, tells Folio:, “Clients can buy audience, but they can’t buy brand or content.” The ad exchange is “blind”, with clients entering target audience demographics into AdMeld’s dashboard. The system then offers the best match, without brand identification.

A Condé Nast rep maintains this exchange is for digital advertising only, “It would never be used for print.”

“The range and control on advertisers that come through is a benefit,” says Schutte. “But it’s still an environment  in which we get direct responses, and we offer rates that go along with that.”

Publishers continue to adapt advertising business models to encourage spend among clients. This summer, Meredith launched its Engagement Dividend program, a guaranteed ROI partnership for 10 clients. Like Condé, Meredith chose partners based on their commitment to up advertising dollars with the publisher.

Time Inc. launched its PinPoint program, a partnership with Nielsen Catalina Solutions. Through PinPoint, the publisher is able to quantify campaign impact among consumers to advertisers through single source data.

At Condé, the private ad exchange is another way to vet quality of advertisers. “What’s important is that we’ve always valued our inventory, the context and the brands the advertiser message gets to stand next to,” says Schutte. “It’s important that if we’re part of an exchange, where rates are generally lower, that it’s only for premium partners.”