As many media outlets rethink their business strategies, there is one company that is eager to work with them: Google. “Google is interested in doing business with you,” as Rory Capern, the Strategic Partnership Lead for Google, told delegates during Canada’s annual INK+BEYOND newspaper conference.
The company now offers a myriad of digital products that can help put newspapers on the cutting edge in the online space: DoubleClick, an advertising technology service that allows Google to create targeted ads based on users’ interests; Google Trends, a graph application that can help organizations track when articles become popular; and customizable Google Search for newspapers to use on their own websites to assist readers in site navigation.
Capern pointed out that search tools are becoming more and more important to website functionality and plays a dominant role in site navigation. “Twenty percent of users default to using search,” he said. When people can’t find what they want through navigation, 50 percent will then switch to searching. If the search isn’t easy, you’re in danger of losing users.
Innovations in online advertising have assisted many newspapers that are looking to monetize their editorial. Google’s online pop-up surveys – invented by the same man who invented Gmail – can be used to create a pseudo-pay wall for readers who may want to access a site.
Carpen also highlighted the many opportunities for newspapers on YouTube, the popular video distribution site that Google acquired back in 2006. “YouTube has three billion playbacks a day,” he noted. Canadians are at the top of that list, consuming more video than any other country in the world. The site offers newspapers a global platform for marketing and monetization of their video distribution.
Companies as large as the New York Times and Al Jazeera as well as numerous smaller community-based media organizations have all capitalized on the video streaming service. Because YouTube allows companies to brand themselves through the channels function, it’s a great opportunity for newspapers to increase their online presence and reach new audiences.
While Google Canada is still a relatively small team, they are eager to help newspapers transform themselves into cutting edge digital players. Capern encourages newspapers to work with Google to help market and monetize their content and increase their reach and relevancy among their online readers.