Gannett (NYSE: GCI), which recently posted a 60 percent drop in profit and a 26 percent fall off in publishing revenues, has been banking on its ramped up internet offerings to eventually balance out the business. The latest Gannett gambit revolves around its an ad network that wraps around USAToday.com and included 100 local print and broadcast related websites. The network is part of a set of online tools to bring its various properties closer together on the web, including the much-hyped local/national web hybrid ContentOne.
There were a lot of questions last year when Gannett went out and bought several social media related companies. Gannett already had invested in them and some wondered whether it was best to simply choose outside vendors rather than bring disciplines typically unrelated to the newspaper business in-house. With the formation of the digital network, Gannett gets its chance to prove it made the right decisions. The network will be powered by PointRoll, which will serve rich media ads. It will also involve the e-commerce play ShopLocal as well as Gannett's most recent acquisition, Ripple6, which is handling marketing tools and analytics.
Among the sites anchoring the Gannett Digital Media Network are its local community networks MomsLikeMe, HighSchoolSports.net, city guideMetromix and BNQT.com, which operates an action sports social net. Release
By David Kaplan