By: Carl Sullivan
A new study finds that many advertisers aren’t convinced that newspaper Web sites provide real value.
“Part of the reason is that newspapers have been providing the online advertising as a bundle along with print advertising,” said Peter Krasilovsky, lead author of the research from Borrell Associates Inc., Portsmouth, Va. “It’s treated as a value-added for print that doesn’t have value on its own merits.”
Still, print newspaper advertisers are more likely to advertiser in online newspapers than they are in non-newspaper city guides or online yellow pages. Of those who had advertised online, nine out of 10 said they’d spent money on newspaper Web sites. Only 28% advertised on sites such as CitySearch or AOL Digital Cities. And most of the advertisers who spent money on these city guides also said they spent money with online newspapers, Krasilovsky said.
Funded by the Newspaper Association of America, the study polled 60 advertisers from a variety of industries, including companies such as Home Depot and United Airlines. Companies that advertise heavily in print newspapers often don’t consider advertising in their online counterparts.
“Newspapers have got to get their ducks in a row and present better research about their Web sites and their reach,” Krasilovsky suggested. One problem is the lack of industry-wide standards for measuring the effectiveness of online advertising. The 89% of advertisers who said they had specific criteria for making online ad buys listed over a dozen different measures.
The complete report is available for free to NAA New Media Federation members at www.digitaledge.org. Non-members may purchase the report for $595 at www.borrellassociates.com or by calling (757) 686-8769.