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Friday, December 29, 2006

Google Newspaper Ads via AdWords Interface?

Via Searchengineland I came across a Washington Post article called Google Set To Expand Newspaper Ad Program.

I have to admit - I'm confused as to what the WP article is actually talking about - the print/magazine program or the newspaper ads program?

Here are a few quotes from the WP article that I don't get;

"This fall, the search-engine company proposed to show how it could help newspapers sell print advertising to the hundreds of thousands of small merchants who buy Internet ads from Google. Advertisers would go online and bid on the excess ad inventory of daily newspapers, giving them a much-needed revenue boost."

There was an online bidding form you could fill out for the print/magazine program, not for the newspaper test that was just conducted with 100 advertisers. I was one of the 100 and the process was completely manual - there was no where to login and do/check anything. That was how it worked for me at least. Back in November the NYT also reported there is an online interface for the newspaper test:

"Advertisers then can log into Google’s main advertising system, known as AdWords, and click to go to the newspaper section. They will see a list of the participating papers and the sorts of ads that are available. They can then enter a bid for a certain type of advertisement, specifying the section and date range. Newspapers in turn see these bids and accept the ones they want. "

So maybe there is an interface but I wasn't given access to it for the test? Seems odd if Google was only working with 100 advertisers wouldn't they want them all really testing the system out?

More from the WP:

"Now, two months into a test with 100 advertisers and 66 newspapers, Google executives say that its pilot program has exceeded their expectations and that they will roll out an expanded version in the coming months. The top five participating newspapers are getting several bids a week from advertisers, the company said."

Still confused. All the newspaper ads I ran were placed for free and I've never been given an option to place any bids. Are advertisers contacting the papers directly to place bids or is are being bids being placed via the "newspaper" section of Google AdWords I've never seen?

More from the WP:

"Google's online system allows advertisers to choose the newspaper and the section, such as Food or Sports or Business, and where they want the ad to run, and then place a bid for that space for a particular day or series of days. The newspaper reviews the bids online and decides which, if any, to accept."

If the article is accurate it appears there is some sort of online system - I just don't get why only certain people from the 100 test group are using it. My biggest issue with the test was the total lack of transparency and control (more to follow in January)...that might not have been the case if I had access to this interface.

If nothing else the WP article has sparked my interest - maybe there's more to the Google newspaper test than I've seen so far. I would love to see a sreenshot of the AdWords Newspaper interface if anyone has one.

Another related article:
http://www.newsandtech.com/issues/2006/12-06/nt/12-06_google-ads.htm

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