Google Halting Print Ad Program With Newspapers

By: Mark Fitzgerald

Google Inc. said Tuesday it will stop offering the Print Ads program that solicited advertisements for more than 800 newspapers.

“While we hoped that Print Ads would create a new revenue stream for newspapers and produce more relevant advertising for consumers, the product has not created the impact that we — or our partners — wanted,” Spencer Spinnell, the director of Google Print Ads wrote in a company blog posting.

“As a result, we will stop offering Print Ads on February 28,” Spinnell wrote. “For advertisers who have campaigns already booked, we will place their ads through March 31.”

Through Print Ads, advertisers using search criteria could make an offer for an ad, and get a response or counter-offer from the newspaper. Most of the revenue generated is kept by the newspaper.

Google launched Print Ads in November 2006 with 50 newspapers. The network had expanded to more than 800 U.S. papers, Spinnell said.

Google wants to continue to partner with newspapers, Spinnell said.

“We believe fair and accurate journalism and timely news are critical ingredients to a healthy democracy,” he wrote. “We remain dedicated to working with publishers to develop new ways for them to earn money, distribute and aggregate content and attract new readers online. We have teams of people working with hundreds of publishers to find new and creative ways to earn money from engaging online content. AdSense, DoubleClick, Google Maps, YouTube, Google Earth, Google News and many other products are a part of our significant investments to innovate in this space.

“These important efforts won’t stop. We will continue to devote a team of people to look at how we can help newspaper companies,” he continued. “It is clear that the current Print Ads product is not the right solution, so we are freeing up those resources to try to come up with new and innovative online solutions that will have a meaningful impact for users, advertisers and publishers.”

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