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10/30/2007

Google�s Latest Move, If Successful, Will Change TV Advertising Game

Google has cut a deal with Nielsen (the dominant TV-ratings company in the U.S.) that will give the search company access to demographic data for ad targeting. According to Reuters, �Google will combine the data it receives from television set top-boxes, with information that Nielsen provides on viewers by gender and age.�

Google hopes that the additional layer of targeting will make its TV advertising sales package even more effective for aiming marketing messages at the people most likely to respond. The company presently has access to a relatively small part of the country�s ad inventory...about 14 million homes, through a deal with EchoStar.

Adding the Nielsen data to its current ad target system, which is used primarily on the Internet, is likely to make network TV executives and sales organizations a bit tense. If the system works well, it could take both the marketing and the pricing of inventory out of the �hands� that traditionally control it. In other words, Google could destroy a system for selling TV ads which has been in place for decades.

It may not matter that networks and cable systems do not want Google to take away their roles as middlemen. If the new system works, they are out of luck...and time.


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