At San Francisco AD:TECH Monday afternoon, there were two sessions covering RSS or Really Simple Syndication. The first session, led by Forrester Research Principal Analyst Charlene with panelists Royal Farros, CEO of Messagecast; Chris Henger, VP Marketing and Product Development for Performics; Catherine Paschkewitz, Director of Consumer Marketing for hpshopping.com. The session concentrated of the definition and technologies behind RSS and the ease, according to panelists, with which marketers can very quickly set up and use RSS to distribute opt in information, such as, coupons, specials, special events, news, to customers. All the panelists agreed setting up and publishing weblog is the easiest method of producing an RSS feed.
Seemingly to give more choice to its advertiser base, Google, today, began testing a new service that allows advertisers to place non-contextual, cpm-based graphical ads on sites of their choosing. It's a marked change from its history as contextual text ad giant. Publishers can opt in or out of this program if they choose. Explaining the new program succinctly is Google Product Management Director Susan Wojcicki who said, "Now our system takes things very literally. If you are on a wine site, we show ads for wine. Now we will let you advertise your cheese on wine sites." Wine and cheese. Nothing wrong with that.
Dannon has launched two online adver-items. The first, called Fusion Breakfast Brawl, is a game promoting the breakfast smoothie and is modelled after the old Nintendo game Mike Tyson's Punch-Out. The second is a downloadable desktop application called the Dannon Recipe Box, which contains Dannon-supplied recipes, but also allows users to create and organize their own culinary creations.
Following a NYTimes.com press release touting its own content as the reason behind "record-breaking" traffic increases during the month of March, Jason Kottke wonders if content is really the reason for the increase. Kottke cites site design tweaks, general increases in traffic to news sites, RSS and blog referrals as points to consider as well, even though the press release makes no mention of those variables.
Ypulse points us to a movie promotion that's co-branded with Sears. Warner Brothers is releasing a movie called The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants which is tied to Sears ads promoting the Levis jeans which will appear in the movie. The promotion, apparently leveraging the uncontrollable urge of 14 year old boys to stare at girl's butts, will likely insure those same boys invite their girlfriends on a date to see the movie. Seems everybody wins on this one.
UPDATE: There's a viral that goes along with the campaign as well.
Launched on April 8th in conjunction with an offline campaign, the Mitchum Man website which posits important man-isms such as "If you’ve spent hours arguing real vs. fake, you're a Mitchum Man" and "If Menage A Trois is the only French you know, you’re a Mitchum Man."
Mitchumman.com features a site of the day, content that aligns with the Mitchum image, and the Mitchum Man-O-Log, a collection of items that every man needs such as a 5 gallon bucket, a stuffed buck head, a gigantic remote, tube socks and economy frozen hamburgers. Whatev.
Following up on its Virtual bartender, Beer.com has launched Virtual Bartender II which features not one but two hot babes, Trisha and Lisa, reacting to your (almost) every command and teasing you until you just have to...well...visit another website. We don't know if this promotes beer.com's cause but it's sure to increase the time spent viewing numbers for its website.
Long time New York PR professional Lois Whitman, who started her career in 1966 as a "copy girl" for Fairchild Publications and followed the activities of Jackie O, Lana Turner, Kim Novak and Liz Taylor, lends experiential insight to the notion more and more publishers are deriving revenue from their online properties than their print properties. Eluding to the notion publisher's offline efforts are increasingly being supported by their online efforts, Whitman posits this trend is being buried by the media for fear of accelerating the death of their many print publications.
It's not an entirely radical, nor new notion but when it comes from the lips (fingers?) of one so steeped in the pre-Internet world, it's a bit more alarming. More so than when it comes from a dot com wannabe.