Radio Monopoly, Clear Channel and Google Partner to Provide Audio Ads Service

Posted Apr 16, 2007

On January 17, 2006, Google had acquired dMarc Broadcasting for $102 million.  The acquisition by the search engine powerhouse has now shown signs of a pay off in the form of a partnership with the world’s largest radio broadcaster, Clear Channel Communications.

Scott Silverman, the previous VP of Finance at dMarc and is now the Strategic Partner Development Manager at Google, announced on the Google blog that “we’ve [Google] fully integrated dMarc technology into Google AdWords, and we’ve partnered with hundreds of radio stations across the U.S., connecting these broadcasters to new advertisers who in many cases had previously not advertised on radio.”

I learned a little bit more about Clear Channel’s media mega monopoly in a Telecommunications class I took at Eastern Michigan University.  “Clear Channel now owns approximately 1225 radio stations in 300 cities and dominates the audience share in 100 of 112 major markets. Its closest competitors — CBS and ABC, media giants in their own right — own only one-fifth as many stations,” wrote Jeff Perlstein in an essay entitled Clear Channel: The Media Mammoth That Stole the Airwaves.

Google will be able to sell 30-second advertising commercial spots on more than 675 Clear Channel AM/FM stations.  Googleâ?¢ Audio Ads.  “Clear Channel Radio gets access to an entirely new group of advertisers within a new and complementary sales channel, and Google adds another option for its existing customers. Google has proven its ability to gain premiums for advertising inventory and that fits perfectly into our broader strategy of building value for advertisers while increasing our overall revenue yield. We’re committed to working with the best-in-class and Google has a real economic incentive to produce meaningfully higher CPMs,” stated John Hogan, CEO of Clear Channel [Information Source: Google Press Release].

I believe that this is great news for advertisers because it gives them further options to get their name across different mediums.  This is clearly bad news for Yahoo! and Microsoft who are constantly striving to compete against Google in the advertising business.

The amount of dollars involved with the partnership is not yet known, but I remember reading somewhere that this deal is for the long-run.