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Online revenue slow to come in district

Independent School District 196 cleared the way earlier this year for advertising on its web pages, but the money hasn't exactly come rushing in.

The district has not added any ads to its main page, and so far Eagan High School is the only district school to put advertising on its school page. Communication specialist Tony Taschner said the EHS ads each bring in about $1,000 per year. With five ads cycling in a box on the school's main page Eagan is not quite to its goal of raising the $6,000 annual cost of maintaining the page.

When it made budget adjustments last summer the district projected $25,000 in revenue from online ads.

At Rosemount High School, administrators are taking their time exploring their options. Principal John Wollersheim said RHS has been approached by a company interested in handling advertising for the school.

Wollersheim said there is no target yet for advertising revenue at RHS.

"I think we want to maximize revenue (but) we want to do it in a tasteful manner," he said.

Taschner said the district is taking a cautious approach to online advertising.

"It's not something that's on the immediate horizon, but probably something we'll get into before the year is done," he said.

Part of what is slowing things down is the fact the district has never dealt with advertising, at least at this level. Schools have sold ads on sports or theater programs, but never online. The district doesn't have people in place to sell ads, or to prepare advertisements for the web page.

There are outside companies that handle those jobs in exchange for a share of the profits. Taschner has already been contacted by a Chicago-based firm.

"I think ultimately that's probably where it heads," Taschner said.

Emily Zimmer
Emily Zimmer has worked as a staff writer for the Rosemount Town Pages since 2007. She has a degree in journalism from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Outside of work, Emily enjoys running, reading and gardening. You can follow Emily's gardening adventures at the Areavoices blog East of Weedin'
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