Thursday, February 17, 2011

COD: Walk Light Media is saving rainforests one big square at a time

Thanks to the ad:tech blog for publishing this first.

Now here's an interesting concept: a new ad network that is helping companies make a positive environmental contribution through their normal operations. Not "reducing the footprint,' rolling it back.

Walk Light Media makes it clear that their focus is on delivering a highly valuable audience to advertisers -- an audience that many companies covet. Specifically, they promise 22MM LOHAS and "green" uniques. Because these audiences tend to be affluent, aspirational, and influential, they represent a strong lure for advertisers anxious to demonstrate their conscientious cred. According to Walk Light, they also over represent in areas like Influencer/Early Adopter behaviors.

The "hook" is that Walk Light Media has a Responsible Media Program (RMP) that protects an area of forest equivalent to the area of the banners run through its platforms. So, for example, an area of equal size to a 300x250 is preserved for every impression you run in that ad size. That means that an acre of ground is preserved for about 400,000 big square impressions.

Now, you can say an acre isn't very much. But the beauty of this model is that the acre is preserved without your lifting a finger -- it happens as a normal part of doing your everyday business. This is a media play to reach a desirable audience, not a CSR-primary thing. The CSR comes as a side benefit of working with them. The passions of their audience run a fairly broad gamut of conscientious interests and lifestyles, including...

In terms of advertising options, they offer IAB standards, Video, interstitials, skins, content creation, deeper promo programs and more. A broad range of targeting solutions is available. They operate in the US and Canada. Not surprisingly, their sites tend toward leaders within the environmental, socially conscious, and LOHAS niches. The name appears to be a play on the myriad of quotes that enjoin conscientious people to "walk lightly" to preserve the earth. Quotes like:

"We have forgotten how to be good guests, how to walk lightly on the earth as its other creatures do."

It appears that the company is built on the idea that the long road to a better future is made of many small steps.

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