Google's Spending on Traditional Ads Jumps Fourfold


The Internet giant spent an estimated $213 million on TV commercials and other "old media" in 2011.

NEW YORK - Internet giant Google, which has long touted the superiority of online advertising, spent about $213 million on ads in traditional U.S. media last year, the Wall Street Journal reported.

That meant a near-quadrupling from the $56 million spent in 2010, according to estimates from Kantar Media, the paper said.

Google has particularly been spending big amounts on TV, magazine and newspaper ads to promote new services such as its Google+ social network and Chrome Web browser. That has boosted its ad spending as a percentage of revenue be be almost on par with fellow tech gianrs Apple, Microsoft  and Yahoo, the Journal said.

Among Google's TV ads has been one featuring The Muppets using the firm's "hangout" video chat, which ran during the Academy Awards broadcast.

"This is a sign of good old- fashioned competition," David Cohen, chief media officer at Universal McCann, the media buying unit of InterPublic Group, told the Journal. "While Google has a dominant footprint in search, they have work to do in other areas to gain market share."

A Google spokesman declined to comment specifically about the Web giant's ad strategy. "Our focus is on uncovering and telling stories about our products, our users and the magic they both create," he said though. "The discussion about how to reach people across different media is a much later conversation."

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