ADOTAS – AOL posted advertising gains for the first time since 2008, according to its Q2 2011 earnings report released this morning. Still, the increases are not enough to bring the “You’ve Got Mail!” company back to life.
Sure, compared with last year’s loss of a little over $1 billion in the second quarter (mainly due to restructuring costs due to the spinoff from Time Warner and a goodwill impairment charge), AOL’s net loss of $11.8 million for the quarter doesn’t seem like the last nail in the coffin. And with an advertising revenue growth of 5% year over year to $319 million, with display in particular up 14%, it appears that AOL has a reason to :) .
AOL CEO Tim Armstrong said in a statement that the company’s return to global advertising growth is “another meaningful step forward in the comeback of the AOL brand.”
But AOL is far from regaining its former status as one of the world’s most popular online destinations. Despite a domestic display increase of 16%, international display fell 10%. With subscription revenue down 23% and a decline in search and contextual revenue of $17.6 million, it seems that the company has taken a few steps back.
Albeit in this zombie-state, AOL remains optimistic, highlighting its Huffington Post Media Group that saw the number of unique visitors surpass 30 million and The New York Times in May, according to comScore.
Armstrong also addressed the recent departure of Jeff Levick, the ad chief he personally recruited from Google, and his replacement with Ned Brody. “I expect [Brody] to eliminate the needless operational friction that has prevented us from moving at the speed we want,” he said. “There is no strategy shift. Double underline, double highlight, double yellow.”