Startup SolidOpinion offers “Promoted Comments” for publishers

New York City-based firm says its commenting platform supplies a brand new income and makes remark moderation reasonably priced.
Have you ever felt so strongly about one thing you learn on-line that you simply needed your posted remark to face out?

This week, a New York City-based firm, SolidOpinion, launched its first product — a brand new commenting platform — to show that zeal from readers, opponents and advertisers into income for publishers.

Publishers can arrange some extent system the place, say, new commenters get a sure variety of factors for performing actions on the positioning. Or they will buy factors.

When posting a remark, a person can resolve whether or not to bid for a Promoted Comments place and what number of factors to supply. Top bid will get the highest place for the lifetime of the article, till another person bids larger. By default, the primary few traces of the highest three feedback are proven on the web page, below the article however above the non-promoted feedback, and readers can click on to see extra Promoted Comments.

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SolidOpinion Chairman and founder Michael Robertson — the founder and former CEO of music web site MP3.com — informed me that his firm has two purchasers at launch, Tribune Publishing’s San Diego Union Tribune and Reason.com.

He mentioned that, to his information, that is the primary time remark positioning has been provided for sale. Commenting is often a money-losing proposition for publishers, he identified, however now it may be a income generator. SolidOpinion is obtainable internationally, in eight languages.

Publishers can arrange such parameters because the variety of factors awarded for sure consumer actions like sharing a remark, in addition to costs for factors, the variety of Promoted Comments displayed with out clicking to see extra and so forth. The Tribune, he mentioned, is charging $1 for 88 factors, however can also be giving out factors for numerous actions that improve engagement, like registering or liking a remark.

Promoted Comments, he stated, are designed to work like Google’s textual content advertisements, with bidding for placement on related pages. In reality, he sees SolidOpinion as a venue that’s notably hospitable to advertisers.

An article on sustaining your home, for occasion, might need an ad-in-a-comment for a neighborhood roofing firm. There isn’t any particular labeling for adverts, however Robertson identified that the Promoted Comments label, like Twitter’s Promoted Tweets, signifies somebody has paid for that place.

SolidOpinion has moderators who see a stream of newly posted feedback and the associated tales, and so they can nix any feedback that aren’t associated in a roundabout way to the story’s matter. The writer — for a desktop or cellular website, or an app — might determine to mechanically put up feedback after which have them moderated afterward, or require approval earlier than posting.

A key query is whether or not the platform will likely be used primarily to spice up reader engagement by buying factors or whether or not it is going to change into a income generator due to adverts. It’s troublesome to ascertain that there are sufficient commenters prepared to pay for increased positions to generate a big income stream.

If Promoted Comments does turn into a venue primarily for advertisements, then the query can be if the presence of advertisements will downgrade the worth of the feedback part. That is, do I wish to wade by the advertisements to seek out precise feedback?

With just a few traces of JavaScript, SolidOpinion’s Promoted Comments can even work with two of the most well-liked commenting platforms, Disqus and Facebook. As an add-on or a standalone platform, there’s no cost for SolidOpinion, which takes a minimize of the purpose purchases.