I would call it AdSpam
browse nearly any web site you want and you will find them attached to the side or the header or the bottom: Large chunks of text based ads (some call them graveyards ;-)
Have you ever clicked there? To be honest I haven't.
But this seems to be the way of financing your website. Using the long tail... so how does this work.
It all works because of the pure mass of placement of your relatively cheap ad. One in a million guy is interested, so hit a trillion and you also hit quite a lot of people of your target audience. Beside the fact that you hit even more who are not within your target.
Negative is now that this forms a unhealthy cycle...
Step 1: Hit as many as possible to rise the chance of hitting the right. This leads to most hitted are the wrong guys.
Step 2: The more someone is hitted wrong the less the single guy cares. Ups the efficency decreases.
Step 3: The less they listen the harder we have to hit them to make them listen. So place even more ad graveyards but to spread even lower click rates over even more graveyards... no,no, I must be wrong here because everybody deeply believes in the long tail...
Step 4: Goto Step 1.
Am I totally wrong here??