The WSJ is reporting (behind paywall) that Google is conducting a small scale test of television advertisements in the Northern California town of Concord (east of San Francsicso), and there are additional rumors that Google is close to signing a deal with Dish Network, a satellite television provider, to supply advertising to its television subscribers.
The article also notes that the total size of the television advertising market in the U.S. is $54 billion annually, which is much larger than Google’s current $20 billion/year playground, online advertising.
There is no information on how much Google is planning on assisting advertisers in creating the ads. Their audio advertising product, also still in testing, contains basic creation tools and access to voice professionals.
Spotrunner, an online startup that assists advertisers with ad creation and buying, has gained a lot of momentum in the last year. Rumors are always circulating that Google or someone else will acquire the company. These tests do nothing to suggest an acquisition is more or less likely – only that Google is definitely looking at the space. Spotrunner has raised $60 million in financing.