Centro Intros Roadblock Ads For Local Sites

Centro is scaling up a service that allows advertisers to place "roadblock" display ads on the local newspaper Web sites in its network, the company announced today. The first customer to use the large-scale service is Saatchi LA, which today bought home page roadblocks on 140 Web sites around the country for Toyota as part of its new campaign for the Highlander SUV.

The Toyota campaign will run on sites as large as the New York Post, the New York Daily News, and the Houston Chronicle, and as small as the Silver City Sun News in New Mexico. Centro has aggregated thousands of local newspapers in a network-style exchange, connected by a single software platform. This allows national advertisers to run display ads with flexible distribution--ranging from a single newspaper's site, to all the sites in a state or region, to a run-of-network buy covering all 4,000 local publishers.

Shawn Riegsecker, the founder and CEO of Centro, says that Centro now handles over half of all national display advertising served by local newspaper Web sites. Centro-affiliated properties enjoyed 100% growth in national display ad revenue from 2006-2007. For the first time this June, Centro appeared in comScore's listing of the top 50 ad-serving Internet properties, ranked by audience--entering at No. 20 with 74.6 million unique visitors, or 42% of the American online population. That compares favorably with Yahoo News, which attracted 32.3 million visitors in June



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