Technorati joins the ad network fray

Blog search engine Technorati has just unveiled its new ad network, Technorati Media. It’s a smart and obvious expansion, particularly as the San Francisco startup tries to regain some of its initial buzz.

There’s heavy competition in this area. Among existing companies, Glam Media, which has been showing big numbers with its controversial push for growth, just announced the acquisition of Monetise Limited, a U.K. firm that represents different media companies, while Federated Media recently launched an analytics service for advertisers as it continues its land grab for publishers. There are new players too, like blogging company Six Apart, which announced a new advertising program back in April.

Having already established its name in the blog world, Technorati could become a serious player. It has been building the network in private testing mode and signed up several sites to form the core of its ad program — blogtalkradio, Blogcritics, blogcatalog, BlogTV, GeekAlerts, GPSMagazine, NerdApproved and Technabob. Chief executive Richard Jalinchindra says those sites reach a collective audience of 17 million and adds that Technorati will be adding other blogs from “the mid and long tail within those verticals,” i.e. similar sites with smaller audiences.

The startup will now split into two operating groups, Jalinchindra says, one focused on advertising and one on the main Technorati.com site. The search part of the business has been taking some criticism recently for updating rather slowly, and the company plans to overhaul its crawler and search engine over the course of the summer. Private Equity Hub broke the news of Technorati’s new $10 million funding round last week.

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