Magazine article Editor & Publisher

System Yields Auto Ad Bonus: Capturing Ad Data Source Allows New Product, Bigger Ad Schedule

Magazine article Editor & Publisher

System Yields Auto Ad Bonus: Capturing Ad Data Source Allows New Product, Bigger Ad Schedule

Article excerpt

Capturing ad data at the source allows new product, bigger ad schedule

The cincinnati Enquirer parlayed a system from Gannett Media Technologies Inc. into a deal to create a twice-monthly tabloid section that helped generate $450,000 a year in extra used-car advertising from a dealer association.

Tom Smith, manager of classified auto advertising, said the tabloid section was made possible by GMTI's new Celebro auto advertising system, which is being phased in and will store dealer inventory information as the base for creating the sections.

The tabloid section was responsible for the Kenwood Dealer Group, 10 dealerships under one owner, increasing its budget about $900,000 over two years, Smith said.

The dealer group -- whose nearly $3 million a year in ads makes it the paper's largest auto advertiser, big enough to justify a full-time Enquirer ad production staffer on site -- opted to sponsor the Auto Choice used-car section as part of a contract renegotiation, at the same time GMTI's Celebro auto system was in development with the Enquirer as a test site. The newspaper and GMTI are owned by Gannett Co.

The 24-page section debuted June 20 with process color on 12 pages, scores of car photos, and coupons.

The Celebro system is designed to provide newspapers with access to the inventories of major advertisers for the purpose of automating ad production -- and generating ad revenue by making new products possible. The auto system was an extension of the paper's success with GMTI's system for real estate agencies, Smith said.

Celebro also allows the newspaper to post used car listings on the World Wide Web, where the newspaper and dealer association have a relationship that generates little revenue for the paper now, Smith said.

"The thought is to take the photos in the book and put them online," he said. "That will probably be one of our next steps."

But implementing the auto system is a "step-by-step process" still in its early stages, Smith said.

For the first section, the newspaper's production department used information from dealer inventory systems, which mainly generate window price stickers. But plans call for GMTI's Celebro software to be installed at the dealerships for the next section. Dealers will enter car data into it, and it will generate window stickers and ad copy, Smith said.

For the pictures, snapshots now taken by dealers and scanned into the newspaper production system, stock numbers accompanying photos are matched with inventory numbers received with the copy for each car. …

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