See Your Ads in Print

Google has just unveiled their newest beta, a foray into the world of "old media" – newspaper print ads. Now you can create and run ads in hundreds of papers across the US, including big city papers like the Philadelphia Enquirer, smaller regional papers like the Raleigh-Durham News & Observer, and local papers like the Marion, IL Daily Republican (daily subscription 3500).

Here’s a list of participating newspapers, as of 23 July 2007.

You can search newspapers by region, size, section (entertainment, science, etc.), as well as their Direct Marketing Association (DMA) ranking. You can choose daily or Sunday editions.

The Google method of buying print ad space has two advantages over the current system:

  1. Google is a one-stop shop for media purchases in many different papers all across the country
  2. Advertisers can negotiate with publishers simply by placing bids, rather than the current way of waiting until the publisher is desperate to fill the remaining blank space and then lying about the great deal you were offered by their competitor (yuck!)

Google is doing here what it has already done to internet advertising – rationalizing a marketplace by equalizing access to information. As anyone who’ve ever tried to purchase a used car from someone other than Aunt Betsy already knows, unequal access to imformation makes for very inefficient transactions. Now that advertisers are free to bid whatever they choose in whichever paper they want, and publishers are free to accept the highest bids, the print ad marketplace can rationalize very quickly. If…

Make your print ads trackable

When you advertise online with AdWords, Google automatically tracks your lead or sale back to the very ad and keyword or web page that generated it (if, of course, you follow the advice in Chapter 14 of AdWords For Dummies, that is).

You must create print ads that have trackable links in them as well. Different calls to action, different "code words" to receive a special offer, different extension numbers, different names of operators standing by, etc. Then you can determine ROI for each media purchase, and bring your AdWords-level accountability for spending to print media as well. (For strategies for creating print ads, check out my home-study course for small business direct marketing, Leads into Gold).

Google is offering a $1000 credit for print ads, including $500 in advertising and $500 in ad creation services. This offer expires end of August, 2007. You can log into your AdWords account to find out more about print ads and to claim your $1000 credit.

See you on the funny pages!

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