Thalia to Sign With Hershey

Hershey Foods is close to announcing a deal with Mexican singer Thalia Sodi to appear in ads developed for general and Hispanic U.S audiences. The deal is another of several deals that have capitalized on the crossover appeal of Hispanic artists. Thalia is known for both her singing and her acting in Spanish language soap operas.

Thalia already has a deal with smart for a collection of branded apparel, accessories, footwear and lingerie.

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04    

The Babes of 'The Apprentice' Hit FHM

Board Room cleavage will hit the cover of FHM in May as four fired contestants of "The Apprentice" strip down to their lingerie in a move that is yet another confirmation of what we've known since the dawn of man - if you can't use your head, use your body. And from the looks of it, these women do have the bodies to succeed. Giving credit where credit is due, the women did turn down a $250,000 offer from Playboy to pose nude. Perhaps there are some smarts attached to those rockin' bodies.

Still, the obsession with hotness reigns supreme. When working at Planet Hollywood during the show, Katrina Campins noticed a guy flirting with Ereka Vetrini and said to him, "Doesn't she look like J. Lo," spinning Vetrini around and adding, "Look at her Ass!"

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04    

AOL to Launch Online Reality Series

Following in the footsteps of The Donald, AOL will launch an online reality series called, "The Startup" which will follow four small business for a year. The series will be featured on AOL's small business service but available to all of AOL's 24 million members. AOL is working with Entrepreneur magazine to produce the series that will include weekly updates on weblogs by the business owners, monthly stories and video vignettes. Somehow, this just doesn't sound even remotely worth viewing. The Board Room is where its at.

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04    

Forehead Advertising Goes Mainstream With Toyota

Forehead advertising, which has been around for a while and amounts to placing a logo on one's forehead, has seen on of its biggest uses to date. Yesterday, an army of 40 people with Toyota Scion logos on their foreheads walked around Times Square to promote Toyota's newest Scion, the tC coupe. Cunning of London worked with Toyota to create the campaign.

Because its new and different, it's getting noticed which is the name of the game in advertising. Unfortunately, there will come a time when weary consumers will either tune out forehead messaging or, conversely and more strangely, look upon those whose foreheads do not have a logo emblazoned cross it as some sort of loser. Photo courtesy of Ad Age.

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04    

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RSS A Potential Ad Medium

RSS, or Really Simple Syndication, is a bit of technology used to deliver content from many sources to one desktop or web-based application. It allows readers to scan and read topics of their choosing in an uncluttered environment. That is, until advertisers heard about it. Faced with difficult issues surrounding email marketing, advertisers are looking for a new channel to communicate with consumers. RSS is one of those channels.

RSSAds is one company that is betting RSS will emerge from early adopter stage to mass market use. RSSAds helps advertiser place ads in syndicated RSS newsfeeds by matching users aggregated content with contextually relevant ads. The difficulty will lie, as it always does, in user acceptance of this model. After all, RSS was designed, clearly, to be as uncluttered as possible and advertising, at least in the consumer's mind, does fall into the clutter category.

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04    

Nielsen to Measure Video Game Ad Exposure

Today, Nielsen will announce plans for a new service called Nielsen Video Games that will measure exposure to ads in video games. The ratings company will also release preliminary findings from its Total Viewing Sources report on usage of the television to play video games. The study claims 7 to 8 percent of men 18-34 and 15 percent of teens are playing video games during prime time.

Unlike conventional Nielsen television ratings, the new Video Games service will measure actual ad exposure and ad recall. Already, preliminary research has shown 27 percent of male gamers have noticed in-game ads and 70 percent say the placement of real products in-game make the game a more realistic experience.

Now if only Nielsen could hurry up and do the same for measurement of TV ads instead of the antiquated programming method in place today.

by Steve Hall    Apr- 8-04