Google's offline forays

While much virtual ink has been spilled about the four “innovations

While much virtual ink has been spilled about the four “innovations” (or “products”, or “betas”, or “lab projects”) that Google trotted out at its public Press Day this week, relatively little has been said about Google’s remarks involving strategies for distribution across media platforms.

Earlier this year, Google bought DMarc Broadcasting, a radio advertising company, for an estimated price of $1.13 billion. The acquisition was viewed by many as evidence that Google would actually succeed in organizing (all of) “the world’s information.”

As reported by Time.com:

In case there’s anyone out there who still doesn’t get it, Google is an advertising company…the money is in advertising and, as an intriguing deal announced yesterday confirms, Google is pursuing ad dollars wherever they may be, in this case, the airwaves…Radio offers significant revenue opportunities for Google. According to ZenithOptimedia, a media services company, U.S. radio advertising last year was about $20 billion…

Remarks by Sergey Brin at Press Day, however, did not convey unbridled optimism in Google’s ability to dominate diverse distribution platforms, as reported by AdvertisingAge:

We're going to continue to try out different media...I'm certain that we can bring something to the table in these different areas, and hopefully it's enough to make a big difference and we can make each of those markets more efficient...But certainly we can't be sure of that. We're going to continue to try.

Additionally, Jonathan Rosenberg, Google’s SVP of Product Management, indirectly acknowledged that Google’s attempts at brokering print ads did not match expectations, as reported by ClikZ:

the company's tests have shown such a product would most likely be successful in niche trade publications, rather than with mass market magazines

The disappointing results of its print ad tests is detailed at Businessweek.com:

Google's Print Auction Fizzles…The search giant's auction of magazine ad space didn't generate much enthusiasm -- or business, in the case of one successful bidder…Google's effort to roll its advertising juggernaut beyond digital and into the world of print publications is struggling.

Will Google replicate its online dominance offline? Join the conversation: “Talk Back” below to share your thoughts.

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