Quigo Signs Up Papers for Pay-Per-Click Ad Service

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By: Jay DeFoore

Quigo Technologies announced this week that more than 130 newspapers had agreed to use its AdSonar contextual advertising service on their Web sites.

Newsday, the Houston Chronicle, the Denver Post, the Rocky Mountain News, the Oakland Tribune and the Commercial Appeal have already started offering biddable pay-per-click (PPC) advertising through Quigo’s AdSonar.

E&P first reported Newsday’s decision to use AdSonar over competitive offerings from Google and Yahoo in June. At the time, Tony Wills, Newsday Interactive’s general manager, told E&P the move allowed Newsday to maintain its local advertising contacts in-house, rather than relinquishing them to a third-party.

In a statement released Monday, Michael Yavonditte, CEO of Quigo, said, “We’re beginning to see a radical shift in the way newspapers are assessing the competitive landscape of content and online advertising. They’ve quickly grasped the idea that it is the newspapers, not the ad network, who should own the advertiser base. Our auction-style pay-per-click is a great way for the newspapers to become relevant to their local advertisers who have been buying keywords from Google and [Yahoo’s] Overture for years now.”

The true test of this strategy will come over the next few months and years, as newspapers attempt to diversify their online inventory by offering the low-cost pay-per-click model to local advertisers unable or unwilling to spend on traditional banner ads.

“Many of our clients are happy we’re offering them a chance to advertise affordably on our site’s pages, a chance they cannot get any other way,” Stephen Weis, VP and General Manager of the Houston Chronicle’s Chron.com, said in a statement. “We’ve found that pay-per-click advertising doubles as a gateway to our other ad products, and it helps keep us front of mind with our current advertiser base.”

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