The Washington Post says that Google is set to further expand its print ad program soon, after a rocky start in March and one expansion in November. Google’s director of print ads, Tom Phillips, is naturally quite optimistic about the future of the program. Newspaper execs are less enthused, as the Post says it remains unclear how much the program will truly benefit newspapers.
The Post states:
Todd Haskell, vice president of business development at the New York Times Co., which is participating, said that the product has the potential to drum up new business from small advertisers but that the Times does not foresee letting go of its direct relationships with its largest advertisers.
(Did anyone think that they would? Was it unclear that Google was selling off excess ad inventory?)
Personally, I’ve seen significant white space in my newspaper in the last few weeks. I think that newspapers can only stand to benefit if they can generate additional ad revenue from Google’s program.
As with any good advertising medium, it looks like a win-win situation for all. Google’s test ends in January, but newspapers and advertisers will have to decide for themselves if the system works for their businesses.