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Tired: Web 2.0; New Hotness: Classifieds 2.0

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Newspaper veterans attending a talk by Oodle.com CEO Craig Donato at a Las Vegas conference learned they’d best get onboard with online advertising ASAP.

Jim Townsend of Classified Intelligence reported from the Suburban Newspapers Association that Donato, of online classifieds site Oodle delivered a righteous sermon to classifieds managers in attendance.

Papers need an online self-service ad system, and they need to embrace that technology immediately. Competition from the likes of Craigslist and Google Base makes that even more critical Advertisers want to get placement, and will pay to do so.

Those self-serve ads and their supporting technology work best when the human element has an influence. Donato cited the “self-policing community” of Craigslist that combats spam; Digg would be another example of that principle.

Donato also made the point that a basic ad unit will become free; he called the shift “Classifieds 2.0.” The opportunity for newspapers will come from upselling beyond the basic placement, and possibly do the extra work of getting an advertiser into Base or Craigslist. Print becomes an upgrade option instead of the primary ad focus.

Mechanisms like search, affiliate programs, and content syndication gain importance in Donato’s scenario. Each offers an opportunity to deliver ads to readers. They all offer papers a chance to profit from the shift to online readership by the target audience.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.

Tired: Web 2.0; New Hotness: Classifieds 2.0
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