Google and Microsoft tangle again — over Verizon

Chalk one up for Microsoft — sort of.

If today’s report in the Wall Street Journal is right, then Microsoft is about to land an agreement with Verizon Wireless to become the default search provider on its cellphones.

In its battle with Google, that should count as a win for Microsoft, even if the company had to offer much, much better terms than its rival.

From the article: “Verizon is tilting toward Microsoft because the software giant is offering significantly better financial incentives, but the telecom company is still in discussions with Google and the situation is fluid with both companies, these people said.”

The WSJ says the deal would likely call for Microsoft to share revenue with Verizon when advertisements come up in response to a search. It reports that there would likely be guarenteed payments to Verizon of $550 million to $650 million over five years. That’s about twice what Google offered, according to the report.

If accurate, Microsoft’s super aggressive offer shows just how worried it is about Google. It needs wins, particularly when it comes to search deals.  But as Silicon Alley Insider points out, Google is under some pressure, too.

Speed is the new big — and other ad talk

iaa-logo.JPGThe International Advertising Association (IAA) is holding its World Congress in Washington D.C. this week, when hundreds of advertising and media executives descend on the nation’s capital to talk about social communities, marketing regulation, return on investment, and, of course, the economy.

Here’s what ad industry types are saying:

“Advertising and the economy seem to go hand in hand. Really, the fact that the economy is weakening is going to have an impact on the industry in the short term.” Bob Liodice, President, Association of National Advertisers

“An actors’ strike would be incredibly devastating, particularly to the television business. The industry paid a large price for the last work stoppage. I don’t think either the (local) economy or the business would be able survive something like that.” Jeff Zucker, Chief Executive Officer of NBC Universal