Claria Looks to Publishers for Distribution

NEW YORK In another effort to win over Web publishers, Claria said it hoped to strike partnerships with them to distribute its Internet-tracking software.

The Redwood City, Calif., adware maker is negotiating with publishers to offer their users personalized Web content in exchange for downloading Claria’s tracking software. The tracking software would collect anonymous information on Internet-browsing habits to compile customized Web content, including news feeds and stories. Claria would also use the profile to target advertising to consumers through its newly formed BehaviorLink ad network. Publishers are paid each time a user who downloaded the software from their site is shown a BehaviorLink ad.

Scott Eagle, Claria’s chief marketing officer, said the company is committed to building partnerships with Web publishers, some of which have accused Claria’s adware of siphoning advertisers from their sites.

“There’s not a publisher who would say, ‘I want a generic experience for my users,'” Eagle said, pointing to research showing consumers with a customized site experience spend nearly twice as much time on the site.

Claria has begun to move away from its roots as an adware company that displayed pop-ups on users computers based on their Web behavior. A week ago, it began BehaviorLink, a broker network that buys remnant inventory from publishers and resells it as targeted inventory based on the Web-browsing behavior of 50 million users with Claria’s software.

Eagle said partnering with publishers to offer auto-generated personalized content, instant messaging applications and toolbars would increase BehaviorLink’s audience.

“Ultimately, we want to be on 150 million desktops,” he said.