27 October 2009

Newspaper sites: The "patent, leather shoe" of advertising campaigns

Advertising managers look away now: a New York Times story has stated how newspaper sites may be overlooked as brands seek to increase their online advertising efficiency, according to a report on SFNBlog.com.

It describes how newspaper sites experienced a temporary boon when Mercedes-Benz USA introduced its updated E-Class cars this summer.

According to the report, Mercedes bought out the ad space on the home pages of The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times, and had those sites create special 3-D ads for them, at an estimated cost of $100,000 a site.

However, the company then tightened its aim and shifted money to cheaper ads from networks, which bundle ad space from many Web sites.

A further blow was dealt when digital media specialist for Mercedes-Benz USA Beth Lange said that they would avoid newspaper sites in the future, when advertising more basic models, and rely on networks.

That lets Mercedes “be very targeted and efficient with our dollars,” said Lange.

The New York Times claims that this explains why newspaper sites are missing out on online advertising revenue even though internet advertising is increasing, describing the sites as the “patent-leather stilettos of the online world: they get used for special occasions, but other shoes get much more daily wear.”
These “shoes” include exchanges like Advertising.com from AOL and DoubleClick Ad Exchange from Google, which dominate the buying and selling of extra space.

There is some hope for newspaper executives. McClatchy Newspapers (whose portfolio includes the Miami Herald) seems to be bucking the trend, experiencing a rise in revenue from online display ads which Christian A. Hendricks, vice president of interactive media at McClatchy, attributes to the rise to the company’s focus on online-only ads and its selling of local ads, rather than national brand campaigns.

The Times counters this however by explaining that one reason newspaper sites do not appear to be bouncing back as much as the overall Internet is price: after advertisers introduce their splashy campaigns on news sites, they can follow up with cheaper ads all over the Web.
If newspapers hope that online advertising will be the end of their financial woes, it seems they may need a new strategy.

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At 4/2/10 8:05 am, Blogger Coetsee said...

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