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Online Advertising Articles
(June 2002)

Overture, MSN Expand Search Pane Deal (internet.com, June 28th)
Treading water amidst a shakeup in its distribution reach, pay-per-click search broker Overture Systems has secured a 90-day deal to continue the supply of paid listings to MSN's Search Pane - a module of the dominant Internet Explorer Browser - while the company decides whether or not to continue with present arrangments on a long-term contractual basis.

Major Web Publishers Sue Gator (internet.com, June 27th)
The latest chapter in the heated 'scumware' debate sees a group of major web publishers (including NY Times Digital, The Washington Post, Dow Jones, Condenet, Knight Ridder and units of Gannet) launch a legal effort against The Gator Corporation in an attempt to halt the firm's parasitic marketing practices. For more on this - direct from one of the plaintiff's pages, see this Washinton Post article. To view a discussion in which smaller publishers have their say about Gator's unethical practices, see this Geek/Talk thread. In an unusual twist, once-respected industry publication ClickZ has chosen to allow Gator to sponsor its media buying column. Update: Gator, meanwhile, has fired back with a suit of its own much as it did when the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) took action to disable Gator's anti-competitive marketing practices.

Overture Continues Global Expansion (internet.com, June 27th)
Continuing its expansion abroad, pay-for-performance search leader Overture has made moves to establish offices in France and Japan - to sell listings in the native languages of those regions.

Survey: Online DM Spending to Rise (internet.com, June 26th)
Market researchers Greenfield Online, DoubleClick and Beyond Interactive have dished up yet another piece of reassuring evidence pointing to an upcoming resurgence in online ad spending. This study, in particular, surveyed 200 U.S.-based executives and brand managers of firms involved in traditional direct marketing, finding that 61 per cent of respondents plan to increase their spending on email marketing this year.

European Union Says Cookies Can Stay (ASP news, June 26th)
The European Parliament recently voted to allow businesses to continue to use cookies in their e-business practices. The vote, which struck down an opt-in campaign in favor of an opt-out policy, is particularly significant for the web analytics and online advertising markets.

What Is the Web Good For, Anyway? (ClickZ, June 26th)
While many in the industry continue spending heavily to produce reports that document the ability of the web to build both brand and direct responses affordably, it seems in some circles that the latest batch of studies are preaching to the converted. Less frequently are media buyers wondering whether the web has value, suggests Jeffrey Graham in this article. Rather, they're asking how they may best put the web to work for them as an effective part of the cross-media marketing mix.

Case Study: ActiveBuddy/ELLEgirl Magazine (Instant Messaging Planet, June 26th)
IM-to-consumer marketing is still in its infancy, yet the field is hardly empty. Case in point: ELLEgirl Magazine has recently hired ActiveBuddy to promote its content via a selection of lively instant-messaging-based bots. And the results are nothing to sneeze at.

CMR Sees Web Ad Growth in '02 (internet.com, June 25th)
Reassuring, though hardly unexpected, overall online ad revenue should register a small improvement this year (about 5.3% increase over the year prior), according to research firm CMR. This modest uptick, though, will still see revenues fall below the levels attained in the still-somewhat-heady year of 2000. For more on which sectors will be driving the improvements, and how this may impact spending in traditional media, see this NY Times article.

Measure the Success of Your E-Newsletter (ClickZ, June 25th)
Starting out in e-publishing? Are you unsure as to the pros quantify the success or failure of their mailings? Then you will certainly find this basic primer of value.

Bluestreak Extends Buying Streak (internet.com, June 25th)
Continuing efforts to expand beyond its roots as a rich-media technology provider, privately-held BlueStreak has made its second acquisition in as many months, snapping up San Fransisco-based Takira in an effort to boost its customer base and technological assets.

IAB Ads Look to Sell the Medium (internet.com, June 24th)
In the trade association's largest effort to date, a multi-million dollar campaign pitches internet advertising's ability to boost brands and sales affordably.

Absolut Brings Album Art Campaign Online (internet.com, June 24th)
The advertiser of exceptional virtuosity, vodka maker Absolut, is taking the wraps off online components of its 'album cover' campaign in which the company works its distinctive bottle shape into the cover art of seminal vinyl albums from the 60s and 70s.

CMGI Dis-Engages (internet.com, June 24th)
Embattled internet investor CMGI has pulled its recent offer to buy ad tech company Engage outright (it had held approximately 75% of the company) and is distancing itself from the troubled online ad technology firm. Additionally, both of the seats that CMGI held in Engage's board have been vacated via resignation following the break-down of financing negotiations.

Interactive Ads Play Big Role in Minority Report (internet.com, June 21st)
Several real-world developments source their inspiration from works of science fiction. This article looks at the world of Washington in 2054 as depicted in Spielberg's Minority Report, and suggests that its idea of interactive advertising (which is centered largely around personalized messages at wireless hotspots) could very well come to pass within a handful of years. Another view of the marketing technologies depicted in Minority Report is presented in this ClickZ article.

INT Media Acquires Jupiter Research (internet.com, June 21st)
INT Media Inc, the web publisher and events firm that operates the Internet.com network, has snapped up the last remaining elements of the failed Jupiter Media Metrix at a firesale price of $250,000. This gives INT control of the Jupiter Research brand and Jupiter's research and events businesses.

Retailers Lead Online Ad Impressions (internet.com, June 19th)
Nielsen//NetRatings' monthly tally of ad impressions shows the usual suspects leading the pack, with travel advertising making the biggest comeback. The results also showed definitive evidence of an online advertising comeback in the works, with 12 out of the 13 industries measured posting year-over-year increases in impressions delivered, with seven categories boasting triple digit growth. Further data from the report may be gleaned by reviewing this eMarketer article.

Cloudmark Unveils P2P Anti-Spam System (internet.com, June 19th)
As the spam problem grows, and concern in the e-mail marketing community increases accordingly, the co-founder of Napster turns his P2P skills to fighting it. ABC News explores the growing P2P anti-spam market and its various players (including Cloudmark) within this article. Update: Cloudmark faces some early bugs and other hurdles as noted in this ZDNet feature. Building on the anti-spam buzz of the week, Salon.com has released a feature commentary that charts the rise in popularity of open-source spam buster SpamAssassin. Read that piece here.

A Classic Scenario: Bad News, Good News (eMarketer, June 18th)
eMarketer analyst David Hallerman looks at the highs and lows to emerge from a recent Interactive Advertising Bureau/PricewaterhouseCoopers online ad report. Despite a market downturn in 2001, classifieds, keyword searches and other sectors picked up some of the slack.

Rival Publishers Look to Aggregate Audiences (internet.com, June 17th)
Five well-known online publishers are banding together to pitch their combined audiences to advertisers seeking to reach consumers at work. Thr alliance, to be known as the "At-Work Brand Network" will see the NYTimes.com, MarketWatch, USA Today, CNET and Weather.com unite in an effort to increase their appeal by boosting reach and cooperating on sales efforts.

DoubleClick Enters Web Site Analytics (internet.com, June 17th)
Online ad staple DoubleClick is branching its tech offerings out from its core ASP-style web ad management systems. Challenging WebSideStory and NetIQ, the firm has recently taken the lid off its SiteAdvance service, which is designed to track and analyze user activity on e-commerce Web sites, for use in studying and improving on site navigation and sale processes. NetIQ is not resting on its laurels, though. Rather, the analytics leader has bounced back from DoubleClick's announcement with a vastly improved release (v5.0) of its flagship WebTrends Reporting Center. For more on that, see this Internet.com article.

Macromedia Blogs and the Death of the 'Official Story' (ClickZ, June 17th)
The latest Internet trend du jour is behind one of the most innovative marketing strategies being deployed today. Why? Because it's honest, and bridges the rift that can often exist between marketing/copywriting and customer service responses.

The Geek of the Gab (australia.internet.com, June 17th)
This article explores the changing face of search engine optimization, and posits that professional optimizers are becoming less techies taking advantage of weaknesses in search engine algorithms and more media buyers as search moves increasingly towards paid inclusion models.

When Bad Ads Happen to Good People (ClickZ, June 14th)
If the average surfer would rather eat a rat than buy an X10 camera, has the campaign been successful? Perhaps to some degree. Nevertheless, ClickZ' Rob Graham posits here that a fairer and less intrusive exchange would better serve both consumers and the marketing community.

Spam: Taking Action (ClickZ, June 14th)
Afraid of using 'FREE' in your subject line? You're not alone. Nor is your fear unfounded. This article details techniques that legitimate marketers can use to bypass existing spam filters.

Online Brokerages Boost Advertising (internet.com, June 14th)
Facing a drastically different market than the heydey of the dot-com era, online trading firms seek to differentiate themselves in order to attract clients. Many now pin their hopes on the success of new online marketing efforts.

24/7 Real Media, Advertising.com Settle Patent Suit (internet.com, June 13th)
Online advertising technology player Advertising.com has reached a settlement with New York-based rival 24/7 Real Media, over charges of infringement on 24/7's ad serving and targeting patent.

British Airways to Expand Campaign (internet.com, June 13th)
The rich-media 'page-tilt' ad unit, featured heavily in an earlier direct response effort to promote the airline's new folding seats, will be reused in a brand-building campaign across several leading sport properties during Wimbledon.

ValueClick Unveils MOJO Publisher (internet.com, June 12th)
The pioneering performance-centric online ad network formally realigns Dynamo under its Mediaplex brand, and asserts that it is continuing to troll for new acquisitions (possibly in the email market), continuing a bumper spending spree that most recently included the acquisition of Be Free, Inc.

Helping Businesses Evaluate Their Internet Presence (NY Times, June 12th)
To ensure that their websites are conveying the intended image, a growing list of businesses, including Avis Rent A Car System, McDonald's, Staples and Holiday Inn, are turning to companies that test usability and brand opinion for help.

Overture Signs Lycos Europe (internet.com, June 11th)
Still reeling from the somewhat negative press associated with the loss of AOL as a distribution partner to startup rival Google, pay-per-click search originator Overture continues to announce new partnerships - this time with Lycos' U.K., Germany and France-based portals.

Yesmail Launches "Append" Service (internet.com, June 11th)
The CMGI-backed email marketing firm has followed in the footsteps of a controversial - and eventually cancelled - plan by DoubleClick to unify offline consumer databases with their online equivalents.

OPA Members See Growth in Online Ads (internet.com, June 11th)
The expectations for the online ad market this year range from a 13 percent drop to slight growth in spending. But looking at consensus numbers concerning both continued audience growth and sparks of advertiser interest, the Online Publishing Association sees plenty to be encouraged about.

Comparing Websites to Print, TV Media in UK (eMarketer, June 11th)
An NFO study finds that over one-half of British adults, ages 15 and over, find commercial television advertising to be annoying, compared to just 18% who say the same about ads on websites. In fact, even radio ads (at 23%) were found to be significantly higher than net ads on the irritation scale, which suggests that some of the reports concerning the flood of flashy online marketing content may be overstated.

CMR Parent Acquires Evaliant (internet.com, June 11th)
Seeking to boost CMRi's ad tracking capabilities, market researcher Taylor Nelson Sofres has acquired Evaliant Media Resources. This gives CMRi access to a spidering technology that Evaliant used to automate the tracking and spending of campaigns from thousands of advertisers across multiple properties.

Avenue A to track Campaign Effectiveness (internet.com, June 10th)
The interactive agency is testing a service that uses surveys to measure brand impact, but looks to go one better by melding post-impression tracking into the mix.

WebSideStory Joins Patent Fray (internet.com, June 10th)
The site traffic analysis player becomes the latest recipient of a patent that covers a technology key to online marketing and user tracking, as firms are increasingly turning to patent law to pressure competitors. This development comes on the heels of similar legal coups by Unicast and ExitExchange, and could threaten competitors NetIQ (owners of the tremendously popular WebTrends product range), DigiMine, Coremetrics and WhiteCross.

Priceline Continues Marketing Alliances (internet.com, June 7th)
Holding onto its existing affiliate arrangements, while expanding this to other major properties and acquiring competitors, the 'name-your-own-price' service has reportedly grown its reach more that 800% in a single year.

ReplayTV Users Sue to Skip Commercials (internet.com, June 7th)
Five digital video recorder users file suit against media companies over over their right to zap commercials, adding their voice to the digital copyright debate. The issue at hand may also have an effect in setting legal precedents that relate to the online ad blocking debate. For more on the issue, check out this Washington Post article.

Think Before You Send (ClickZ, June 7th)
Email marketing is a tricky beast to conquer, and newbies to the artform may derive a basic understanding of the groundwork that must be in place before a message is sent by reviewing this ClickZ article.

Yahoo to Give Home Page a Makeover (CNET News.com, June 7th)
Yahoo is planning to launch a newly redesigned home page that features a cleaner layout and a better showcase for advertisers, according to sources familiar with the changes. The news may come as a ho-hum to publishers who are used to freshening up their property's appearances frequently, but Yahoo! has stubbornly stuck by its old design principles since its debut in 1995, making the transformation a newsworthy event. Media buyers will no doubt see great opportunity in Semel's flexible treatment of the Web's most recognizable piece of real estate. Further details concerning the redesign may be found in this Internet.com article.

BMW Cars to Star in Online Movie Sequel (USA Today, June 6th)
BMW have decided to abide by an old Hollywood tradition by following up their extraordinarily successful BMWFilms.com online branding campaign with a sequel series. The first round consisted of four films directed by and starring leading figures from the film industry. Seen by millions of users, the 'entermercials' are credited directly for the company's successful sales figures for the year. Directors of the new films have yet to be named, but the pictures will adhere to the same basic premise in an effort to recapture interest.

AOL Waves Away Online Ad Concerns (internet.com, June 6th)
Media titan AOL, whose stock price and earnings projections have been battered badly this year, has once again come under fire after announcing that it expects the unit's online ad revenues to fall during 2002. What's more, the group's predictions for a significant uptick in earnings during the second half of 2002 have been put under scrutiny, with high-profile industry analysts suggesting that AOL is likely to see continued weakness well into 2003.

comScore Nabs Media Metrix (internet.com, June 6th)
Jupiter Media Metrix has sold the online audience measurement half of its business to rival comScore Networks, bringing the troubled Internet consultancy a step closer to completely dismantling and selling off its various units. Jupiter now consists only of the Jupiter Research unit, effectively marking the end of an era in internet measurement - given that Media Metrix were the first player to enter the fray to any significant degree.

Networks Not Shy About How Much Advertising Was Sold (NY Times, June 6th)
America's leading free-to-air television networks have just landed an impressive round of preseason ad sales against their fall prime-time lineups, but doubts remain as to whether competing media can back this effort up with increased sales of their own being that demand for fringe media traditionally lags behind the core targets in the early stages of a recovery. For more on this, see this additional NY Times piece.

The Search for Portal Profits (australia.internet.com, June 5th)
A dramatic change is occurring in the online advertising landscape, with banner ads pulling to the side of the information superhighway as pay-per-click search engines scream past at blistering speed. The rising transaction model is not only breathing new life into portal plays through strategic revenue-share partnerships, but is serving as a genuine threat to traditional direct marketing and yellow page services.

Study: Catalogers Excel in E-mail (internet.com, June 5th)
DoubleClick has found through a recent study of email effectiveness that mailings from catalogers tend to be more successful at connecting with consumers than email distributions from many other industries. The study found that click-through rates and email forwarding rates were larger for catalogers and retailers than for marketers in the entertainment, financial services, B2B and hospitality industries.

IAB Kicks Off New Study (internet.com, June 4th)
The Interactive Advertising Bureau's long-awaited and much-touted "Phase II" marketing mix study is finally off and running. The study will be the largest research project to date on the role of online advertising in advertisers' overall ad budgets, and follows a Phase I study which concluded that advertisers may markedly increase their ROIs by increasing the proportion of the marketing mix that goes to online spending. The previous study - centered around buys on the MSN portal - inferred that online ad prices presently offer great value to brand advertisers, and it is expected that the broader follow-up will support these findings, and encourage greater designation of budgetary funds to the medium as a result.

Unicast, Bluesteak Set Aside Differences (internet.com, June 4th)
Unicast continues to shore up its market dominance in the rich-media interstitial space through a deal with Bluestreak that will see the firm offer Unicast's proprietary 'Superstitial' product as the exclusive interstitial format on its ION ad server. Bluestreak and Unicast will also endeavour together to extend the Superstitial's reach to include email distribution. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed.

LookSmart Submission Program Spurs Lawsuit (internet.com, June 4th)
SearchEngineWatch's Danny Sullivan has learned that paid listings search provider LookSmart is facing a proposed class action lawsuit over a recent change in how the company sells some of its commercial website listings. Moreover, it has enforced these changes without granting its existing advertisers with advance notice or hinting at upcoming changes during their submission process. The suit charges LookSmart with breach of contract, fraudulent business practices and misleading advertising.

Creating Traffic With Creative Branding (ClickZ, June 4th)
Here, ClickZ Martin Lindstrom highlights the case study of an Aussie pizza joint that took innovative steps to branding its website, while lopping off the limbs of its competitors. The strategy, which incporated offline and online elements, while calling for action in an exciting manner, was a great success for the firm.

NYTimes.com Debuts Dayparts (internet.com, June 3rd)
Following the launch of 'surround sessions,' the Web publisher looks to bring another traditional advertising concept to the Internet. Though the latest format, dubbed 'site sessions' is hardly original, with small publishers negotiating time-based sponsorship models for years - the NY Times' decision to sell premium ad placement according to the amount of time requested by the advertiser - rather than by a set number of impressions, clicks or completed actions - is an intriguing development.

Intel Shies From "Inside" in New Campaign (internet.com, June 3rd)
The chipmaker is embarking on a new advertising effort - its largest yet - to reach business buyers and extend its foothold in the enterprise market. The new campaign shies away from Intel's trademark "inside" pitch and instead orbits around the word "yes" in an aim to affirm Intel's image as a leader of innovation, stability and reliability in the chip market.

Aprimo Lands $12 Millionn (internet.com, June 3rd)
Marketing technology startup Aprimo is the latest to receive an influx of cash from investors, granting votes of confidence in both the fledgling field of enterprise marketing management and venture funding of online ad plays in general.

Time to Tame the Data Jungle, Part II (ChannelSeven, June 3rd)
As optimization solutions gain credibility among marketers, a handful of interactive players have begun to integrate data from banners, e-mail reports and other sources. They then use the info to tailor the ads they serve to the previous behavior of a prospect. But does it work?


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