The advertising engine
Making an impression via relevant and targeted ads
The advertising engine (AE) we are launching is both a rethink of how to approach marketing within Healthica
without being intrusive, and how to make the advertising text relevant to the content into which it get embedded.
What we really wanted to achieve was an ad system that doesn't annoy people. This article is a deep dive into
what we're doing with the AE — intended to explain it to our pro clients, and to the user base as a whole.
To use the AE, you need to convert your account to Healthica Pro. Contact us for details and pricing.
Ads are text-only and maximum 200 characters. You are encouraged to include your phone number, email, website,
Ads are configured to run in a specific manufacturer/modality channel (i.e. "Siemens MRI"). You can add
sub-channels such as limiting your ads to only appear in parts requests.
Ads are run as “campaigns” with a preset number of times the ad will appear. The ad will not expire
until/unless all of its views have been used.
You can run as many campaigns as you want, in as many channels as you want, but the AE rotation system will
always select ads based on when they last ran, so no one can dominate a channel, unless they want to purchase
multiple campaigns on it.
Two core principles are inherent in the rules. (1) All ads have the same priority. We don't appreciate auctions
where you have no chance to be “seen” unless you have a massive ad-spend. (2) We think ads, in the
context of a professional network like Healthica, should be designed for branding (making impressions) via
subtle and relevant content.
TEMPLATES AND CAMPAIGNS
We support (and recommend) creating a basic template to start with. You might begin with a basic description of
your business model, and some contact information. You can save this as a template, and use it to create new
ads that you actually run as campaigns.
When you are ready to create a new ad, you have the option to start with a template, or just create an all new
ad. In this case, we have an ad with 193 characters, a simple branding statement, and our contact information.
New ad ready to save and launch
The next step is to target the ad via a “channel”. The minimum requirement for a channel is a
manufacturer and modality, but you can get more precise about the areas (refererred to in the AE as
“sub-channels”) where you want the ad to appear. In this campaign, we are targeting both parts for
sale and parts requested in the Siemens Medical Systems MRI channel.
Targeting the new campaign
Once that the ad has at least one targeted channel, it is ready to launch.
The campaign now has a channel set
To launch an ad, you need to purchase a block of views. For the purpose of this post, the client has purchased
10,000 views and has allocated 5000 of them to this campaign. The moment your campaign goes active and
views are allocated, the AE places it into the rotation.
AD DISPLAY AND ROTATION
When Healthica sends out client communications (i.e. a new parts request has been made), the people who receive
the content are selected by their channels. The AE
uses exactly the same selection mechanism.
If the current context is a Siemens Medical Systems/MRI/parts request, the alert is only going to
users who subscribe to that channel. What the AE scheduler does is this:
Locate all users subscribing to this channel, and all ads that use the same channel settings.
Load the alert template.
Starting with the first user found, load the ad which has the longest duration since it was last shown and has
at least one available view, and insert the ad content into the alert.
Decrement the available views for this ad by one view.
Repeat steps 3-4 until there are no more alerts to send, or no more eligible ads (on this channel with 1+
To clarify step #5, what the AE does is use as many views as are available for the first ad in rotation, and then
repeats with subsequent qualified ads, until either it runs out of eligible ads, or everyone on the alert list
has been processed.
EXAMPLE EMAIL AD
This is a sample email (rendered in Gmail). You can see the ad has been inserted just under the logo.
New request alert with embedded ad
The design here is intentionally discreet. We embed it just below our logo, using a smaller font and different
background, so it's noticeable, but not intrusive. We see ads in the context of making “impressions”
— building awareness of your brand, but not dominating the main content.
EXAMPLE SMS AD
This is a sample text message (rendered in iMessage) for users who receive alerts this way. The ad appears below
New request alert with embedded ad
Referring back to the 200 character, text-only limit, this is the reason. We want ads to be relevant, and to not
distract from the main content. Also, a banner ad will not display in the text message version.
We hope this article provides you with a good understanding of the Healthica ad model. The most important points
Ads are directed to channels so they are precisely targeted, and your ad for Ultrasound equipment is not shown
to MRI clients.
Unused ad views never expire and can easily be reassigned to other campaigns.
All running ads have the same priority logic. The one that's been waiting the longest is the first one shown.
There are more aspects such as running multiple ads on the same channel, updating an ad “on the fly”,
tranferring unused views, and more. We will get into these more specific subjects in the help
section. For now, if you have questions about participating in the ads program, please contact us at
Clark Wilkins, Simplexable 2022.06.23