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Google's Microsurvey Tool Pays Off for Publisher

Two weeks ago Google rolled out a microsurvey option for publishers–a tool that holds interesting promise for publishers and online new organizations, as well as marketers as Google is positioning it as an alternative to online ads.

Some of the early adopters—namely the Texas Tribune—are already drawing in revenues that suggest it is a product worth considering.

The tool is straightforward: Publishers display a question. For every reader that answers Google pays them 5 cents. The data is passed on to market researchers who pay Google 10 cents for the answers.

The Texas Tribune began placing the microsurvey on its data pages when accessed by search in August 2011, Journalism.Co in the UK reports.  It is now making $5,000 per month.

Resistance Grows as Paywalls Rise

The format is also an alternative to paywalls, a device that readers are increasingly coming to resist. Eight in 10 US adults are willing to pay “nothing” per month to read a daily newspaper’s content online, according to an Adweek/Harris Poll conducted in March 2011.  Of the one in five who would pay, 14% said they would pay between $1 and $10 per month while very few said that they would be willing to pay between $11 and $20 (4%) or more than $20 per month (2%).

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