Display Ads Working Well For L.A. Paper’s Site

    May 1, 2008

The death of print used to be a hot topic, and after the first signs of a recession appeared, predicting print’s downfall became absolutely fashionable.  But an examination of the Los Angeles Times’s display ad revenue reveals that it’s doing a good job of adapting.

L.A Times
 Rob Barrett

Rob Barrett, the general manager of LATimes.com, said the site should generate around $25 million in display ad revenue this year.  By itself, that would sound nice enough.  Barrett mentioned that LATimes.com brought in about $6 million in 2005, however, so you can see what sort of increase has taken place.

As for the future, Barrett thinks the Los Angeles Times’s website will be responsible for about 20 percent of the paper’s revenue by 2011, according to Kate Kaye.  Which is extremely impressive.

Naturally, this doesn’t mean other papers aren’t in trouble, and as for the recession, people in every industry might do well to hold on tight.  The success of LATimes.com should serve as an encouraging example to other companies in the online ad business, though, and may encourage the uninitiated to try it out.

The site’s success also speaks to the importance of a focus on local interests.  Had the Los Angeles Times decided to focus more on national subjects, it would have encountered more competitors, but in a smaller niche, it’s thriving.