Hearst to integrate Meebo advertising services across 13 of its digital properties, will launch Meebo Bar on magazine websites to drive advertising revenue, increase audience engagement, site traffic

MOUNTAIN VIEW, California , May 15, 2012 (press release) – Meebo, a consumer Internet company that drives user engagement and reaches almost half the U.S. Internet population, announced a partnership with Hearst Digital Media (HDM), a unit of Hearst Magazines, and on Twitter @Hearst_Digital, to integrate the Meebo Bar across 13 of Hearst’s premium digital properties. HDM tested the Meebo Bar on Seventeen.com in 2011 and saw increases in audience engagement and revenue on the popular site, leading to a broader rollout that will begin in June.

Hearst Digital Media plans to launch the Meebo Bar on the web sites of Cosmopolitan, Country Living, ELLE Decor, Esquire, Good Housekeeping, House Beautiful, Popular Mechanics, REDBOOK, Seventeen, Veranda, MisQuincemag.com, TheDailyGreen.com and Woman’s Day. Under the terms of the partnership, Meebo provides advertising revenue to HDM, and HDM will sell Meebo’s full suite of rich media advertising products to their direct advertising partners. In addition to delivering advertising revenue that contributes to a web publisher's bottom line, the Meebo Bar provides more ways for a publisher to easily circulate its content to engage users.

“Hearst Digital Media strives to lead the publishing industry by partnering with innovative technology firms like Meebo to increase revenue, audience engagement, and site traffic,” said Grant Whitmore, vice president, Hearst Digital Media. “Meebo offers a commercial-grade solution that, in this instance, makes partnering versus building a very straightforward decision. The Meebo Bar gives us multiple options for customization, and lets us prominently highlight and re-circulate content that readers want to see, without having to invest a lot of resources on our end.”

The Meebo Bar can be easily customized by marketing and editorial managers through the Meebo dashboard, without touching any code, and HDM will actively leverage this capability. Today, Seventeen.com uses a real-time notification feature on the Meebo Bar to push messages and links to users, driving them to other content on the site. Upwards of three percent of daily unique visitors to Seventeen.com click on the real-time notifications feature.

“When people visit their favorite websites, such as Hearst’s premium properties, they expect an engaging content experience,” said Seth Sternberg, Meebo’s co-founder and CEO. “The Meebo Bar empowers publishers like Hearst to engage their audiences with a lightweight, easy-to-integrate product that is monetized by premium advertising from Fortune 500 brands.”

“We are always on the lookout for innovative advertising platforms and other technologies that will help to increase engagement and deliver premium experiences that drive results for our marketing partners,” said Kristine Welker, chief revenue officer, Hearst Digital Media. “We have been able to successfully harness the Meebo platform on Seventeen.com and are excited to carry this across other sites in our portfolio.”

About Hearst Digital Media

Launched in March 2006, Hearst Digital Media, a unit of Hearst Magazines and on Twitter @Hearst_Digital, is dedicated to creating and implementing the digital strategy for Hearst’s magazine brands and other sites, which serve the company’s consumer audience. The unit oversees more than 28 websites and 14 mobile sites for brands such as Cosmopolitan, ELLE, ELLE DECOR, Esquire, Good Housekeeping, Marie Claire, Popular Mechanics, Road & Track and Seventeen, as well as digital-only sites such as Delish.com, a food site in partnership with MSN; and RealBeauty.com. Hearst Magazines has published more than 150 applications and digital editions for the iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch, as well as the Android platform. In addition, the company includes iCrossing, a global digital marketing agency.

About Meebo

Meebo is a consumer internet company that drives user engagement across the web and reaches half of the U.S. internet population. Meebo provides publishers and advertisers a surprisingly simple way to leverage this massive audience by organically weaving content engagement and brand experiences into the consumer’s web experience. Meebo is a privately held company that was founded in 2005. For more information, visit meebo.com.

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