Road Signs 07.2008

Wooden Horse News reports Car And Driver publisher Hachette Filipacchi Media is revamping all their websites, beginning with the biggest, www.womansday.comMediaweek reported that “a source familiar with the strategy said the emphasis seemed to be on creating community features and aggregating content from elsewhere rather than original journalism. ‘They’re trying to figure out what the sites will look like, but they’re not expecting a ton of original content,’ this person said.”

Tameka Kee, writing in Online Media Daily (Searching For A New Car, You Tube Style) reports a recent study commissioned by Google revealed, “Consumers are increasingly finding out about new makes and models through online video. Nearly half (49%) of all in-market shoppers and about a third (31%) of recent buyers surveyed had been exposed to new vehicle choices for the first time through online video . . .”  That is good news for journalists who are able to generate online buzz about cars because a Nielsen CGM/Homescan Buzzfacts study revealed that more than half of consumer generated media (CGM) is posted because of product experience or response to material posted on a site.

While a good deal of the media research results tends to favor its sponsor’s interests (see Google above) it is still worth noting that newspapers are reportedly enjoying a three-to-one lead over other local market advertising competition according to a specialist in local market advertising, Borrell Associates. . . Karl Greenberg, writing for Media Post,  says a study by research firm Synovate shows that most consumers don’t get how hybrids work and the differences between them.  Once they do, the study revealed, consumer interest in hybrids doubled while interest in flex-fuel cars dropped considerably.  Also noted in the research, consumers placed Toyota and Honda well ahead of other manufacturers in the field of hybrid and alternative fuels.

A provocative quote from a study report by PR firm Fleishman Hillard, “journalists and bloggers are increasingly one and the same.” . . . In a letter to the New York Times, American Copy Editors Society president Chris Wienandt averred that despite the Newseum’s failure to document the place of copy editing in journalism, “copy editing is not going away.”  But it may be going far away.  The Associated Press reported Mindworks Global Media, which is based outside of New Delhi, India will take over copy editing duties for some Orange County (Calif.) Register stories and handle page layout for a Register community newspaper for one month.

eBay Motors has launched a division for marketing certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles, CPO cars and trucks. The new property will be exclusively sponsored by Lexus, but initially also carries General Motors and Chrysler vehicles.