Papyrus fans, rejoice! Google
Google Print Ads turned heads when the product was launched in November 2006 through 50 newspapers. It gave new-media sponsors a way to reach old-media customers. A year before that, Google sent up a trial balloon when it took out ad space in tech magazines such as PC Magazine and Maximum PC, and resold spots within the pages to select AdWords sponsors.
Shuttering the program when many newspapers are scaling back, filing for bankruptcy reorganization, or closing down completely may seem to make sense on the surface. Just last week alone, we heard:
(NYSE:SSP)is set to close The Rocky Mountain News if buyers don't step up.
(NYSE:GCI)will also kill the Tucson Citizen if a suitor isn't found by mid-March.
- The Star Tribune of Minneapolis filed for bankruptcy reorganization.
New York Times'
(NYSE:NYT)Boston Globe announced that it will lay off 12% of its newsroom.
A combination of flagging circulation rates and the drying up of print advertising is a one-two knockout blow for many daily newspapers.
This doesn't mean I agree with Google's move to cut ties with its print-advertising program. In fact, I think it's a stupid move. Yes, newspapers are fading away, but Google should have been the last one to turn out the light.
Google has spent the past few years establishing itself as the king of all media. It became a major player in video advertising when it snapped up YouTube. It became a radio-advertising bigwig when it acquired dMarc Broadcasting. Print is a logical extension of its reach, since it offers sponsors a one-stop shop across major media outlets.
You can't ignore the newspapers. Not yet. Even Yahoo!
Google has been cutting back on projects this month. I think I may have seen Google Lively and its Dodgeball mobile social-networking site on the rack at a local Circuit City liquidation sale over the weekend. Why is this happening? Is it just so Google can explain to investors that it's reacting aggressively to what may be a blown quarter tomorrow? I think the better move would be to push ahead at a time when rivals such as Yahoo! and Microsoft
The time to be aggressive is now, when it's the contrarian thing to do. It's not as if these projects are burning through Big G's massive coffers. I'd take out a print ad through Google to make my point, but I'd better hurry. I only have a few months left.
Other ways to approach Big G:
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz wonders why everyone is hating on Google these days. Let him know in the comment box below. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.