Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Google says goodbye to print

One of our five marketing themes for 2009 is Testing the Real World (here). The basic idea is that you can fall in love with planning, but don't fall in love with your plan...testing ideas out in the real world will tell you everything you need to know about the validity of your ideas + assumptions...and when the real world says stop, organizations must be able to say 'ok' to themselves.

And so by way of example, Google's plan to expand it's digital empire into print seems to be at an end. They have announced the end of the Google Print Ads application effective February 28. Which is likely fine, given the sorry state of print (as in newsprint) overall (here and here for prior examples + data).

So What?

Google has exemplified the idea of the perpetual prototype...even some of its most popular applications are still listed as 'beta'. But what Google has seen in its 'beta' approach to enabling print ad buying using the same platform as online, is that the market says stop. 

Hats off to Google for having the guts to look beyond the fallacy of sunk costs and put an end to this particular experiment.  

Rest assured there will be more experiments (from the Google blog announcement):

"We will continue to devote a team of people to look at how we can help newspaper companies. It is clear that the current Print Ads product is not the right solution, so we are freeing up those resources to try to come up with new and innovative online solutions that will have a meaningful impact for users, advertisers and publishers."

No comments:

Post a Comment