Media General (NYSE: MEG) has often credited its membership in the Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) Newspaper Consortium for helping to boost its online ad revenues. Now, the Richmond, VA., owner of The Tampa Tribune, Richmond Times-Dispatch along with 20 other dailies, is extending its display sales partnership with Yahoo to its TV station websites. Media Gen has completed a display sales trial with Yahoo in four of the company’s local markets: Birmingham, Ala., Columbus, Ohio, Mobile, Ala. and Greenville/Spartanburg, S.C./Asheville, N.C., which has two stations. The effort also comes as Yahoo seeks to broaden its local efforts beyond newspapers, as in the case of its alliance with direct marketer Valassis to help the portal attract local telco ads to the online space.
Media Gen says it has generated $7 million in online newspaper ads from its work with Yahoo last year. It expects to derive $10 million from the Newspaper Consortium in 2010.
While there has been a lot of focus on the “death of newspapers” meme, the severe ad sales difficulties that local broadcast advertising has been experiencing have tended to be overlooked. Media Gen has high hopes for expanding its Yahoo display services, which include training as well as use of the company’s audience targeting tools. The additions of the TV stations to the mix is expected to raise Media General’s total Yahoo display revenues by approximately 50 percent year-over-year. Release