Google geeks are abandoning their company pool tables in droves to brainstorm the best way for the online titan to blast its way into the branded, or display, advertising market.

Google executives announced Wednesday in a conference call with analysts that they will be experimenting with various new advertising formats over the year ahead in a bid to give a mega-volt boost to advertising income.

Video ads are a major area of exploration, although the developers stress that both the underlying technology and psychology involved in harnessing search characteristics to branded ads are challenging and time-consuming.

"There's demand for branded advertising product in every country and in every market and from every kind of customer," said ceo Eric Schmidt.

"It's a question of whether our system, which is so highly measurable, can really handle that . . . We have not yet come up with an approach that meets the kind of measurable . . . based advertising that we'd really like to put our brand and our name behind."

Google's senior management cadre also admitted their disappointment with the company's early efforts to meld Google search techniques with print magazines. This is another factor that drives the search for new revenue channels.

Schmidt dismissed current speculation that Google will focus on acquisitions to build online traffic, although he conceded that the firm expects to seal more alliances with other websites, replicating the partnership reached last year with AOL.

Data sourced from Financial Times Online; additional content by WARC staff