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Borrell: Stations Seeing 35% Boost in Online Revenue This Year

Local TV broadcasters tallied $1.97 billion in online ad revenue in 2011, according to a new study from Borrell Associates, a 41% increase over 2010. Stations are forecasted to blow past the $2 billion threshold this year. Borrell Associates forecasts $2.7 billion in local TV online revenue, a 35% increase over 2011.

Borrell revealed the numbers in its new Benchmarking Local Online Media survey.

"Local TV broadcasters continue to grow online ad revenue at an impressive clip," said the study, which singled out Gray Television and Meredith for growing revenue at a 50% rate in the last half of 2011, along with LIN, Nexstar and Gannett for their digital gains as well.

Station groups partnering with Yahoo, such as Gannett, to help sell online inventory is a factor in the station digital growth.

"Last fall Yahoo broadened reach to local TV stations and is now driving millions of dollars in new targeted-banner ad sales for some groups," said the study.

Newspapers claim almost 25% of a market's local online ad revenue and broadcast TV takes 12%. Pure play digital outfits, meanwhile, grab over 46%, while radio gets 1.8%.

KSL Salt Lake City was once again held up as a station with extraordinary digital savvy, its online directory business alone earning $4.4 million last year -- or, more than 97% of stations' total online revenue.