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Interactive marketing and other great advertising ideas since 2003
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December 31, 2003
It's predictions time!

What will happen to online advertising in 2004? Very very good question... To find a few answers, read the article by Janis Mara on IAR. The market should grow, bringing a differentiation between online marketing investments in branding and direct marketing, as Nate Elliot, analyst at Jupiter Research, explains.
There's also a lot of confidence in the growth of search engine advertising, as confirmed on the New York Times, dedicating an article to the matter (More Businesses Are Turning to Paid Listings on Search Engines).

I guess I should have an opinion myself. Well, I obviously tend to agree with the idea that online advertising will grow in 2004, since this will represent a natural evolution of the market. However I wish this growth won't be just a rush to adapt to the mainstream but, on the contrary, a conscious development towards creativity and quality.

December 30, 2003
It's better with the Butterfly

Microsoft is ready to launch a new version of its MSN, with a new advertising campaign, that includes print, television and online media. "It's better with the butterfly" claims MSN, which seeks to inform people about the benefits of the new MSN and entice them to experience the value that these services can add to their online activities. MSN will feature several home-page takeover ads as well as other rich media ads displayed on partners sites as well.
Della Quimby, account director of Avenue A, the agency that partnered with MSN for the online creative said:

"The sophistication of today's digital marketing landscape offers an array of innovative ways to reach consumers online. MSN is pushing the envelope with its ad elements and media mix, while at the same time focusing on delivering the right message to the right audience. In our latest online effort, we're focused more than ever on reaching today's broadband audience. The new MSN is a compelling new product for this high-speed enthusiast."

Further details about the ad campaign strategy are unveiled in a press release available today on Biz Yahoo!.

December 29, 2003
I'm dreaming of a... "wireless" Christmas

More than 600 millions SMS have been sent in Italy last week to wish "Merry Christmas", while the MMS have been 20 millions.
The news is reported by, quoting numbers estimated by Telefono Blu.

I confess it. Given the Vodafone Christmas card promotion, I sent more than 30 SMS myself, and I'll probably do the same on January 1st.

Teens, Santa Clause and the mobile phones

Sounds like the title of a fairy tale, but the story of teens, Santa Clause and the mobile phones it's simply in the results of a survey, commissioned by Cingular to investigate the relationship between US teenagers and cell phones.
As explained last week on eMarketer, "nearly 50% of respondents said they want wireless phones to help them stay in touch with family and friends, a percentage that rises from 33% who said the same in 2001."

Integrated campaign for Amanti

If you're Italian, don't get me wrong, "Amanti" it's simply the name of a new large sedan by Kia Motors America.
If you are not Italian, let me explain that "Amanti" in Italy means "lovers" and/or "mistresses".
Anyway, the news is that Kia Motors America will launch an integrated ad campaign for "Amanti", taking advantage of Tv, print and the Internet. The story is published on BrandWeek, but no detail is reported about the online creative, so it's just interesting to note that automakers now the Internet as a consistent part of their advertising mix.

[30.12] update: I was wrong, you can actually find details on the online creative on IAR.

December 25, 2003
Merry Christmas

Life (fortunately) is not only about advertising... Merry Christmas everybody!

December 24, 2003
BMW: simple but effective

Joseph Jaffe on iMediaConnection analyses the latest banner campaign by BMW, the brand finally delivering in the online space, using a "message short and sweet and intended to be just that".

December 20, 2003
Crazy marketing

Watch three minutes of on-screen advertising every hour and get a PC for free. This is the crazy marketing idea by Metronomy a UK startup. talked about it this week.
The idea sounds really crazy to me since I can't see balance in the cost for users and for the company. The viral effect of word of mouth about the initiative is the only positive effect I can imagine, and I'm not sure that's enough to justify such an action.

Everyday life with mobile technology

According to a new study from IDC, Mobilizing the Consumer: 2003 Survey Results, personal use of mobile devices, technology, applications, and services is on the rise as many previously business-focused solutions have been extended or repositioned for the home. As explained in a press release by IDC, mobile phones continue to be a big part of consumers' lifestyles.

Of course this news sounds very promising to mobile marketers who will have the chance to target a wider group of users hence to get bigger budget to spend on this medium

December 19, 2003
The 'Evil Twin' becomes wireless

After the successful online video ad campaign launched in September (read here), Ford has decided to go wireless to promote its SportKa 'Evil Twin'. Revolution Magazine reports about the mobile marketing push launched in the UK.
Usha Raghavachari, Ford Ka brand manager, said:

"SMS is a great medium for Ford to contact young male drivers, who are extremely confident and comfortable using text to communicate. The immediacy and ease of response of mobile makes it the ideal method for establishing contact and building a long-term communication."

Lord of the Ringtones

To promote the final episode of the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, Verizon Wireless and New Line Cinema have set up several "Return of the King" applications and promotions, including a game and a sweepstakes. Wireless Watch reports.

December 18, 2003
Brand Team loyalty via SMS

Bowl Champion Denver Broncos will send their fans up-to-the-minute news about the team via SMS. As announced in a press release fans can sign up to receive the latest team and player news, scores, game recaps, injury updates and more. Each alert costs two cents to receive and fans may choose how often they want to get the alerts.
Shall we look at the team as at a brand? Probably... in fact, team loyalty means business through merchandise, tickets etc...

Smarties targets teens with a viral game

Nestle Smarties has launched a viral game offering UK teens the chance to become a junior music reporter. The competition is part of an integrated marketing strategy in cooperation with the magazine "Smash Hits". To learn more, check out Brand Republic.

December 15, 2003
Disney ready to launch

Disney has partnered with Samsung to launch, its first comprehensive consumer Internet site devoted to its wireless content offerings. As explained in the press release, the site will provide consumers with information regarding Disney Mobile content offerings and purchases as well as product demonstrations. Larry Shapiro, executive vice president of business development and operations of Walt Disney Internet Group said:

"We've seen significant growth in both consumer awareness and usage of our mobile content over the past year, primarily driven by carriers' marketing efforts. We now believe the U.S. market has matured to a point that allows us to begin marketing directly to our customers."

Ok, now that Disney is in the arena, we can eventually say the U.S. Market is maturing...

Flash-based advertising: a devil's idea?

Paul Carr is a brave man, that's no doubt. Just read his today's column on, in which he attacks Flash-based online advertising:

"It's hard to imagine Satan himself being able to invent a more annoying and intrusive type of advertisement."

I don't complete agree with what he says, but I no doubt admire him for taking the risk of such a statement.

Verizon tries to introduce ringtones mania in the US

Customize Your Jingle Bells, says Verizon Wireless in a press release announcing that it will allow American mobile users to download their favourite holiday tunes.
"Get It Now" is the name of the virtual store with ring tones, games and other applications available to buy.

Orange presents "The Expressionist"

British carrier Orange has launched an MMS based competition called The Expressionist. The idea is building a gallery of facial expressions from people around the UK and beyond, best pictures will be voted and winners will receive "some incredible mood-altering prizes" (i.e. a Panasonic X70 phone).
MMS winning pictures will be exposed in January in a top London gallery.

December 14, 2003
Cheerios targets new mothers online

Invest in costumer education, and get their future loyalty. Cheerios has recently launched an online campaign to tell new mothers about the importance of feeding their kids with cereals. On, you can find both the creative and the content section.

December 13, 2003
Coca-Cola and the Web: love's in the air

Coca-Cola is taking the heavily investing in Web communication, proving the media potentials when the goal is branding. The multi-national corporation has recently announced that in January it will launch in the UK an Internet music download service (, which will offer more than 250,000 songs (Revolution reports). At the same time, in Spain, Coke has presented �La Tienda Coca-Cola�, an online shop selling gadgets and merchandising, giving to charity the revenue (read more about it in Spanish on Marketing Directo). The shop is reachable by passing through the corporate Web site, and this fact highlights Coca-Cola�s intention to get people to know the Company better. On the other side, the online music download service is a clear example of Coke�s trying to build a relationship with young surfers, since the Company is not expecting to make a profit from the service.
I believe we could easily adapt Pepsi�s tagline like this: Coca-Cola: the music for the new generation.

December 12, 2003
N-Gage presents Mobile Ratitude

The first ever mobile gaming competition that will allow gamers to compete wirelessly in a skill-based competition has started yesterday in the US. As a press release on Yahoo! News says, the tournament will be exclusive to Activision's Tony Hawk's Pro Skater for the N-Gage game deck where gamers can challenge high scores posted by other players in the N-Gage Arena. Monthly prizes will be assigned to the best players.

AOL names the finalists

AdWeek says that America Online has named three finalists in the review for its interactive creative and media duties. Modem Media, Digitas and AtmosphereBBDO will be running for the precious account. The final will take place early next year, when the three agencies will present their online marketing plans proposals.

Spiderman 2 movie preview on Yahoo!

Columbia Pictures will launch Spiderman 2 on July 2nd 2004, but they will present a trailer preview this week on the Yahoo! network. As explained on PR Newswire the trailers will be shown on 13 different countries.
You can learn more about the movie at:

CyberCenter winning streak

It's a golden period for the Chilean agency CyberCenter. As La Segunda reports, they have recently won the 'Best Website Design' at the New York Advertising Festival, and a couple of days ago they triumphed at Creativos Online 2003. In the competition organized by the Asociaci�n de Medios en Internet (AMI), CyberCenter has won the first prize in the following categories: Pop-up, mailing list and mini-site.

Toyota goes interactive in Germany

Toyota has recently launched a campaign in Germany to promote its Corolla Diesel, using both Tv commercials with iText functions and the possibility to join an online game to actually win a car. reports.

Unusual integrated marketing

Buy a "Christmas" subway ticket, travel for free with your family throughout Milan, join an online competition branded "Lord of the Rings" and win a plane ticket to New Zealand. Sounds confusing? Probably... It's an initiative promoted by Yahoo! in cooperation with Medusa (the movie distributor) and ATM, Milan's Public Transport Company.

December 11, 2003
Automakers: go where the prospect is (Volvo docet)

With two out of every three car shoppers gathering information online before making a purchase, guess what's the best place for automakers to advertise?
AutoWeek says it's the Internet (sounds strange, eh? :-) explaining that both Honda and Toyota have decided to run Web only campaigns through MSN's network. Volvo docet...

It is also interesting to notice that not only the advertising industry press talks about the Web and its potentials. Maybe the Internet is eventually becoming a medium mature enough to be seriously considered by a wider public.

(Wireless) Girls just wanna have fun

Wireless gaming is on its way to becoming a mass-market phenomenon in the U.S. As stated in a recent press release, IDC expects the number of wireless gamers to grow from 7.9% of all U.S. wireless subscribers in 2003 to 34.7%, or 65.2 million users, by 2008.

Wireless users (both girls and boys) really enjoy wireless gaming, and this means great opportunities both for content providers and advertisers.

Online advertising in growing

Probably it doesn't sound like a scoop, but it's worth reporting that the third-quarter total marks a 20% increase over the year-earlier period and a 5% rise over second-quarter 2003. Promising numbers have been issued by the Internet Advertising Bureau and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Panasonic targets MMS users... why??

New Media Age reports that Panasonic has recently launched a direct mobile marketing campaign to promote its new X70 mobile camera phone. The campaign features a MMS message sent to MMS-enabled handset subscribers.

Given the fact the the average MMS enabled phone is one year old. My questions is: why target people who already have a MMS enabled phone, instead of targeting the campaign to SMS aficionados (long time lovers)?

Alerta MTV: new mobile service in Spain

MTV Espa�a is ready to launch a daily SMS service to provide subscribers with the most relevant MTV news of the day. Diario IPMark (free registration required) says that the service will cost 0.20� and will be offered in cooperation with Buongiorno-MyAlert.

New web site for Evian

Evian has put some freshness on its Web site, launching a new version developed by Nurun. The Web site is Flash based and, as AdWeek explains, aimed at affluent, health- and image-conscious 35- to 49-year-olds. It also features a sweepstake to win a dinner in finest restaurants across the US.

Code of conduct for the mobile industry

Mobile users privacy should be eventually protected in the UK. Brand Republic reports that the Mobile Marketing Association has launched a code of conduct for the UK's mobile sector that should be used by marketers as reference in planning their text marketing campaigns. A copy of the Code of Conduct in PDF format can be downloaded here.

December 10, 2003
National Postal Services invest in online advertising

In the Netherlands, the National Post Service (TPG Post) launched a viral campaign to promote its online postcard service, while in Spain, the Sociedad Estatal Correos y Tel�grafos opened a tender to select the advertising agency to create a campaign for the online postal service.
In Italy, as Pubblicit�Italia reports, Poste Italiane has decided to create a series of advergames to explain consumers the characteristics of its new paying systems. There will be an email marketing campaign to tell people about the advergame (which will also have a wireless version), as well as an online advertising creative.

December 09, 2003
Nappies's online promotion

Back from a short vacation in Barcelona...

Proctor & Gamble has decided to use the Web to promote its Pampers brand. The news is reported today on Revolution, saying that the campaign will run through MSN network.

It will be very interesting to see the creative used to promote this product online. P&G; is investing a lot in Pampers' online presence, as you can tell from the Web site, which offers a lot of baby related information, and it's said to have 725,000 per month.

December 02, 2003
Nintendo builds loyalty online

Babel Media has produced two localised game websites in English, French, Italian, German and Spanish, for Nintendo of Europe. As explained in the press release, Babel has produced original Flash games based on Nintendo's characters, plus a unique Windows application that allows the user to reproduce sounds from Nintendo's games.
Nintendo's objective is to build customers' loyalty, strengthening the relationship online. Marko Hein, Head of Product Analysis & Online for Nintendo of Europe, said:

"The creation of games websites and VIP incentives for Nintendo required an agency with a deep understanding of videogames and hands-on experience of creative execution. The long relationship with Babel Media gave us the confidence to trust a partner that understands the needs and preferences of Nintendo fans and to provide online assets of creative excellence."

Online advertising: the European pact

The Italian portal Libero, together with Wanadoo Group, and (German portal) have announced the agreement to create a pan-European advertising network. It will operate in Italy, Uk, Spain, Germany, The Netherlands and France, granting about 30m unique users and 2 billions page views per month.
The idea behind the project is to present online advertisers with a single point of reference when planning a campaign.

December 01, 2003
Bafta 2003 nominations

The best websites and digital TV shows have been shortlisted to compete in the Interactive Bafta Award. BBC News reports that for the first time, the Baftas will be split to recognise the best DVDs and websites, with a different ceremony for games. The winners from 12 different categories will be announced on February 19.
The nominees for the Bafta Interactive and Bafta Games Awards are listed online on Bafta's web site.

Music downloads to mobile phone: a new business? Not really

Daren Siddall of GartnerG2 comments about U.K. mobile network operator O2 launch of a pioneering system for downloading music via mobile phones. According to the analyst, there are three factors restricting O2 Music to a niche market: cost per song, convenience and lack of added value.

Purina: a tv spot to drive traffic online

R/GA, the interactive agency that works for Purina (a pet food producer), has created a tv spot to promote its new Web site for pet owners. As explained on AdWeek, this is the first time that R/GA produces a tv spot since 1999. For Nestle Purina, it has created Web sites for Nestle Purina brands including Cat Chow, Purina One and Tidy Cats.

From SMS to Video: Growing Mobile Data Applications

German research firm Soreon has recently release the report "From SMS to Video: Growing Mobile Data Applications" dedicated to the wireless market in Germany. As explained in the press release by Steffen Binder, research director at Soreon:

"While SMS and ring tones have been around for years as Cash-Cows for network operators rapid growth of GPRS-services (E-Mail, MMS) and premium applications like chat, sports and adult content over the last 12 months gave an extra boost to the data revenue growth."

SMS, ring tones and similar services will generate this year more than 3.7 bn � in Germany.

A new fashion: the ringback tone

A new fashion is coming to Europe: the ringback tone. The service, that has been very popular in South Korea, could be available by mid-2004. As Bbc News reports, the service lets you choose what the person calling you hears when phoning.
A new interesting business is born...

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