For those of you who do not know, TRIP receives no government (or health service) support to run the TRIP Database. Currently, the TRIP Database is subsidised by other information-style contracts we have with a modest number of organisations.
We have ambitious plans for TRIP and we would like to make it self-sustaining. The only clear route is through advertising. We currently have Google ads on the results page and this brings us relatively little; certainly not enough to expand the service! I think the main reasons for this are (probably) the fact that our users are click averse (the advert has to be clicked for us to raise any money) and that the adverts are not targetted too well.
However, we are currently starting to move over to a new advertising system, which will serve adverts from the pharamaceutical industry. This will involve using an advertising agency – so not dealing with the pharma companies directly. Essentially, the pharma company pays the agency to place adverts on sites aimed at clinicians.
The other key advantage to this system is that we are paid, not on clicks, but on the number of time we display the adverts. So simply showing the advert will gain us some income. Last week we were searched nearly 250,000 times (over 40,000 times on one day), so we’re hoping that our income from advertising, while not being spectacular, will give us some extra security and funds to further develop the site.