Google and Facebook have become the main beneficiaries of the booming internet advertising market in India. Media companies at home seem to be losing ground, as well as revenue. According to latest reports, the combined ad revenues of Google and Facebook at ₹23,213 crore is higher than the combined ad revenues of the top ten listed traditional media companies at ₹8,396 crore. This comes as no surprise but as a huge warning bell for traditional media companies who depend quite significantly on advertising revenue for their sustenance and survival.
It is Google and Facebook’s algorithms which determine which content or article would be shown prominently. With massive user data at hand, these companies know the preference of their users and are able to customise messages and advertisement in a very focussed way. Traditional media sites just cannot match this efficiency in advertisement delivery. The growing duopoly on cornering advertisements may cost media dearly in the long run, particularly, the news media in India.
Consumer behaviour and corporate spends have changed sharply during the pandemic with more emphasis on digital. Consumers also access the information via the internet, many having lost the habit of reading physical copies of newspapers and magazines.
Digital and print ad revenue for newspapers has been falling sharply in India. In 2020, major media houses announced job closures and print shutdowns. Print media was hit the hardest with severe drop in…