Another week and another exciting update about the state of web publishing.

Auto Industry Drives Online

You may recall that the auto industry isn't fairing so well. While stocks fell earlier this week a Nielsen report shows that as far as the auto industry in concerned, their online presence isn't doing as badly as Detroit. Even as auto companies slashed their overall ad budgets in the second half of 2008, their online spending dipped only 0.5%.

So far this year, Nielsen says that auto-ad spending online is “once again gaining momentum and is forecast to be on par with Q1 07, while still slightly below Q1 08.” By next year, Nielsen expects the Internet to be the second-largest advertising category for car makers, after TV.

Real Estate Makes a Deal

As much as newspapers are suffering, classified revenues have suffered the most, including real estate ads. Even with no signs of turn-around likely, Zillow.com has signed 180 newspapers, who have agreed to create co-branded real estate sites. The deal, which includes newspaper sites such as The Tampa Tribune, Richmond Times-Dispatch and Winston-Salem Journal, represents an extension of Zillow.com’s year-and-a-half-old real estate ad network and newspaper consortium.

By having access to Zillow’s search tools, users can examine any home address, neighborhood or locality. Then, they can find home values, recently sold homes, homes for sale, open house listings and local market data. The sites will also connect to Zillow’s real estate community content via Zillow Advice, as well as mortgage rates.

Sounds great, and perhaps it would be if the market wasn't as down as it is. Yet,  it's just the thing to help revive the market.

The Future of Journalism and Social Media

You know we couldn't leave alone the state of the news. And neither could Curt Monash of Text Technologies, who remarkably synthesized the discussion about the future of journalism last week. From walled gardens to the state of technology to online advertising, it covers it all. Adjacent to the summary is the state of social media. Basically, the argument goes that social media done in a silo is social media done wrong. Social media allows for transparency and authenticity on the behalf of the user, and if it's compromised, the entire marketing effort is thwarted. For the enterprise, a few guidelines for engaging in social media are offered, including:

  • Your blog should have two main purposes -- to express yourself and to drive search engine traffic.
  • Establish a corporate presence on Twitter to maintain personal relationships with influencers.
  • Disregard the usual “rules” about posting frequency.