UX and Ad Revenue: What principles do you use to balance these sometimes competing requirements?

2 Apr 2012 - 11:45am
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Most of the sites I've have worked on in the last several years have generated the bulk of their revenue through subscriptions or product sales.  My current project is to design a mobile website for a news/magazine organization that generates a lot of their revenue through ad sales.  In particular, they are looking at having a single advertiser "sponsor" their mobile website for an entire month.

Not having worked on a project like this before, I'm struggling to figure out how to design the wireframes in such a way that on the one hand there will be ample room for ads so we can get advertisers interested in sponsoring the site and on the other hand the ads will not negatively impact the user experience so we can keep users interested in visiting the site (and hopefully clicking on ads).  

1) Does anyone have any examples of sites that use sponsorship/co-branding well?

2) So I'm not just copying other examples without understanding them, what principles or research findings are out there to help me make decisions about ad placement, sizing, etc. to maximize ad revenue without degrading the user experience?  I'm particularly interested in mobile-specific research or best practices.


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