Google moving into TV advertising

March 13, 2007

So Google is now moving into TV advertising. Reports state that they’ve begun buying ad time on a small cable TV station called Astound in Concord, California. They’re then selling ad breaks to advertisers via an auction system that’s similar to the one they’re trialing for print ads. The auction system doesn’t use technology however, rather it’s using salespeople to regulate the auctions as they’re technology isn’t yet up to the job.

This trial is partly to test the concept for advertiser buy-in (something I’m certain they’ll get) and also to test they’re own network infrastructure in anticipation of rolling out TV ad’s to cable networks globally.

This is the first confirmed news of the move into TV though there have been mentions in a previous earnings filing.

Google have also filed a patent to deliver ads to billboards recently. If they keep up this momentum we could see Google become one of the biggest advertising networks very quickly. Having such broad coverage on web, building penetration in print and with the move into TV they could quickly become a dominant (if not the dominant) force in ad placement.

Quite how this fits with the company mantra of making information useful and accessible is beyond me…

Edit: Another story has just broken about Googles’ TV ad desires which sounds much more like it could become a good fit for them. The below taken from Marketing Vox about the rumours of an upcoming deal with Dish Networks:

The rumors of a Dish Networks deal come just a day after reports were confirmed of Google’s testing TV ads in Concord, California. But delivery over Dish Network’s system would allow the commercials it serves up to be better targeted and relevant to what people were watching.

There’s also the issue of interactivity. Dish operates one of the most interactive networks in the country, allowing users to search by keywords and define their programming according to their tastes.

All of that is data that Google could potentially mine to serve up ads that appeal directly to the viewers.

Now that sounds right up Googles’ street. Attention meta-data to be had and targetted advertising a plenty…

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