Marketing Momentum

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

View an Ad, Get Free Music

SpiralFrog recently announced its plans to provide an online service that allows users free ad-supported downloads of music and videos from the catalog of Universal Music--which includes Sheryl Crow, Fall Out Boy, 50 Cent, U2 and Kanye West.

Before downloading from SpiralFrog's collection, users will need to spend approximately 90 seconds per track, or two minutes per video, navigating through pages that display ads next to content. The service provides more than just music with material including concert information, artist bios and more.

Lance Ford, the company's chief sales and marketing officer, anticipates the service will especially appeal to the teens and 20-somethings that grew up with the peer-to-peer services that enabled free music downloads. As such, SprialFrog intends to pursue ads targeted to that age group. Users will need to provide basic demographic information in addition to their email address.

Perry Ellis and Benetton are two companies that have already signed up for ad space.

It will be real interesting to see how successful they'll be with this plan. Personally, I wouldn't want to be bothered with having to maneuver my way through ads just to get a free music download, but I'm not part of their target market. However, I do remember what it was like being a poor high school and college student, and in that case, I might have very well been willing to use a service like SpiralFrog - that is if I could have afforded a computer.

On another note, I never thought of Perry Ellis as appealing to teens and 20 somethings.

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Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Sports Illustrated Offers Desktop Application

Next week, Sports Illustrated will launch mySI. The downloadable application includes a sports news ticker, stats, standings and other features that fans can use to track their favorite teams.
Although the introductory application will only focus on pro football news and information, SI plans to add other sports, including baseball, basketball and various other college sports, next year.

SI is kicking off the new service in conjunction with it's NFL preview issue, and has lined up Comcast, Miller Lite, Nissan, and Radio Shack as sponsors of the new mySI application. Different sponsors will be featured for baseball and other sports next year.

This is not SI's first attempt at utilizing new technology. Previously, it created a special Web site for its annual swimsuit issue and made videos featuring models available via iTunes and mobile phones.

I'm not much of a sports fan, but this sounds really cool. Read the full article at MediaPost Publications.

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Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Ford Makes Huge Ad Buy on Blogs

Ford Motor Company recently purchased ad space on 400 blogs running BlogAds ad boxes. The ads are appearing on urban-hipster sites like Gothamist, as well as environmental-themed sites like Treehugger.

The ad copy reads:
The Future of Fuel, The Future of Ford

With one of the worst fuel efficiency records of any car company, Ford is trying to "go
green." As another oiled crisis looms on the horizon, can they turn talk into action?

The ad then provides a like to "Read More."

The owner of BlogAds was so excited over the deal that he sent an email to all 400 webmasters, receiving the ad, expressing his excitement. And, just as everything is reproducible in this information age, you can read the email on Jalopnik.

I think it's pretty cool that Ford, a major company, is looking at new advertising options. They're willingness to advertise on blogs is a step in recognizing the power potential of blogs and the target audiences that use them.

On another note, I was quite surprised by their ad copy. If I hadn't known it was from Ford, I would have never guessed it. The copy appears as though a third party wrote an article about Ford. Given the news and opinion nature of blogs, I guess ad copy had to appear more news and less fluff like. I also think it's pretty bold of Ford to acknowledge themselves as having "one of the worst fuel efficiency records of any car company."

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Monday, August 14, 2006

Perspective on Blogging & Search Engines

Recognizing that bloggers within search engines are becoming an important human voice and point of contact for the public, competitors, and SEOs, what did top three executives have to say about themselves as search engine bloggers ?

Melanie Colburn shares that information from a recent Search Engine Strategies conference. The conference provided a discussion panel with Matt Cutts from Google, Jeremy Zawodny from Yahoo!, Niall Kennedy from MSN, and Gary Price from Ask.

Key Highlights:
  • Keeping perspective
  • Company bloggers in the news
  • Are they PR Guys?
  • Syndication
  • Vlog & Podcasts

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Thursday, August 10, 2006

A Doh! Moment for AOL

In posting its report of 20 million search queries, AOL neglected to remove sensitive information of the 650,000 subscribers performing those queries like users' real names, social security numbers and various other personal information.

And if that wasn't enough, the report also detailed searches for specific people, addresses, telephone numbers, illegal drugs and more - making it easy for law enforcement, employers or friends to identify these people.

AOL posted the 440-meg downloadable file called "500Kusers.tgz" on its research web site, After several blogs started linking to it, the company took it down.

AOL spokesman Andrew Weinstein told the Associated Press, "It was an innocent enough attempt to reach out to the academic community with new research tools, but it was obviously not appropriately vetted. If it had been, it would have been stopped in an instant."

Gosh, after learning this, I don't feel so bad about my goofs.

Read the full article at TechCrunch.

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Sunday, August 06, 2006

Moneyless Monopoly

I was just reading where Hasbro is coming out with a debit card version of its famous Monopoly game. Instead of playing with the fake paper money we all associate with the game, players use debit cards and an electronic debit card reader. The role of banker is pretty much eliminated as the reader keeps track of players' cash balance.

But for those who prefer the old fashion version, don't worry, it will still be available.

Are we going a little too far with using technology for fun? After all, it's a board game that's been popular for many years without such technological devices. I suppose if Grandma and Grandpa want to play a fun game of Monopoly with the grandkids, the kids will now have to teach Grandma & Grandpa how to play.

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