Local newspapers and online ad revenue: is Yahoo Apt the solution?

Yahoo\'s Apt logo

Could a new “revolutionary” online advertising scheme from Yahoo be the monetary solution local newspapers are looking for?

Yahoo chief executive Jerry Yang yesterday unveiled Apt in the US which, as the FT and paidContent report, is a “one-step” service for planning and buying online ads. Yahoo plans to tap into the $8.5m local ad market and help newspapers sell inventory from online sites, including Yahoo, in a revenue-sharing agreement.

Here’s the official press release.

One of the first groups to benefit, the Media News Group, owner of the San Jose Mercury News, was impressed. Chief executive Harry Schneider said “you wouldn’t be hearing people talk about the woes of the newspaper industry”, if Apt had been around earlier.

He said the reason newspapers don’t make any many from online ads is “we’re selling cheaper remnant ad space” in comparison to print display ads. Within five years, Schneider said he expected his group’s profits from online to growm from 22 per cent to 50 per cent.

Non-American publishers can expect to take part some time next year when Apt is expanded beyond the US.

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