The central difference between today and 2000-2001, however, is that consumers are now online and depend on the Internet in ways they did not the first time around. Plus, advertisers are convinced that they’re not getting the same value they once did from traditional media.
So what will happen?
There may be more online spending with the top sites (Google, Yahoo, MSFT, MySpace, etc.) and less everywhere else. Advertisers cannot afford to ignore the Internet because that’s where large numbers of people are spending lots of time. And in an environment of fear and retrenchment, they won’t want to pay the comparatively high ad rates in newspapers, mags, TV, print YP, etc.
In such an environment Google, Yahoo and a few ad networks may prosper, relatively speaking, because they’ve got scale and are safe, while others suffer and many of the marginal “Web 2.0” companies tank and fold.
Time to sell everyone . . .
The other thing we might see is more consolidation: an investment in Yahoo or a sale of AOL, etc. Blodget has a pretty detailed rationale why he thinks AOL should be sold to Yahoo.