Hurricane Sandy blows up’s traffic (960M pageviews in 3 days)

Want to master the CMO role? Join us for GrowthBeat Summit on June 1-2 in Boston, where we'll discuss how to merge creativity with technology to drive growth. Space is limited and we're limiting attendance to CMOs and top marketing execs. Request your personal invitation here!

Forty-one million visitors. Nine hundred sixty million pageviews. Three days.

That’s what Hurricane Sandy is doing for As panicked coastal residents up and down the Eastern seaboard are wondering what mother nature is going to bring them, they’re going online. And is a big beneficiary.

AdClarity, the advertising analytics tool, studied for the past three days. It’s clear that big storms mean big traffic … and big ad numbers. is already the biggest and heaviest trafficked weather site in the U.S., an AdClarity spokesperson told me. But in the last week, its already-high traffic has jumped 20 percent.

Wondering how The Weather Company survived? We asked them.

And just yesterday? Almost 30 percent:

Above: traffic, as guesstimated by Alexa

Image Credit: Alexa

That’s big news for the advertisers on the site, says AdClarity, who are now accessing even larger swaths of the population. Top advertisers include NationWide, with the insurance giant taking 11.5 percent of the available adspace, Travelers, and Advil.

Above: Travelers’ ad on

Image Credit: AdClarity

AdClarity’s snapshot shows how marketers are reacting almost instantly to changing circumstances.

Travelers’ ads, for instance, highlight Hurricane Sandy by delivering almost a public service message: what your emergency kit should contain, how to prepare your home for a disaster, and so on.

Instant tailoring of ads and quick buying to jump on an opportunity shows the possibilities in real-time advertising, in which marketers adjust campaigns on the fly to fit news, trends, and even, in this case, weather.

The challenge in jumping all over advertising opportunities when a disaster is looming, of course, is avoiding the inevitable ambulance chaser comparisons.

VentureBeat’s VB Insight team is studying email marketing tools. Chime in here, and we’ll share the results.