What Media Company Gained the Most Market Share in 2007?

by: Erick Schonfeld

When it comes to market share gains in advertising dollars, Google outstripped every other media company in 2007, whether you look at the Web, TV, print, or radio. Earlier this morning, Henry Blodget compared the advertising revenues of 17 major media businesses (including News Corp, Time Warner Cable, Viacom, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, AOL,, the New York Times, and CBS Radio). He left out Disney for some reason, but otherwise it’s a pretty good set of data (see the spreadsheet here). According to his calculations, total online ad revenues across these 17 companies grew 9% last year, online revenues grew 28% (versus 3% for offline ad revenues), and Google’s online ad revenues grew 44% (versus 15% for the combined online ad revenues of Yahoo, Microsoft, and AOL).

But let’s take a deeper dive into these numbers. Google added $2.6 billion in advertising revenues last year. Next in line and far behind was News Corp., which grew its ad revenues by $915 million. To better visualize how much Google is creaming every other media company, I put together the charts above and below (click on them to see a larger version). And here’s a table with each company’s ad-revenue gains (or declines), in descending order:

Now, what about absolute market share? Google does pretty well there too, with 14.9% of the total $58 billion represented by all 17 businesses. That is up from an 11.3% market share in 2006, and makes Google No. 2 behind News Corp’s 16.5% market share. (No.3, actually, behind Time Warner, but Blodget separated Time Warner Cable, Time Inc., and AOL, which combined would have a 15.2% market share).

Looking at the absolute numbers in the pie chart and table below really helps you put these businesses in perspective. For instance, check out Yahoo in the No. 4 spot, with $4.7 billion in ad revenues last year. It is right behind newspaper company Gannett, which is still a cash cow, but saw its advertising dollars decline by $338 million last year. Yahoo, in contrast gained $361 million in ad revenues. That’s still a fraction of Google’s growth, but looking at the absolute numbers let’s you see why Microsoft wants to buy it. A combined Yahoo-Microsoft would be No. 3 on this list.

And here are the underlying numbers: