The Apprentice 'hires' Yahoo!; Burger King, AOL in whopper music promotion; Chrysler AIMs to teach teens safe driving.
The Apprentice "Hires" Yahoo
Reality television producer Mark Burnett Productions struck a deal with Yahoo to produce, host and sell advertising for the official Web site for the second and third season of "The Apprentice," and to integrate exclusive "Apprentice" content throughout the Yahoo network.
Additional reality programs on which Yahoo and Mark Burnett Productions will collaborate are also expected in the near future. The television company also produces "Survivor", "The Restaurant", and "The Casino."
Each week, "The Apprentice" Web site will feature video footage from each episode not seen on TV, a weekly column by first-season contestant Sam Solovey, and themed Yahoo Messenger backgrounds. Other site features include an inside tour of the candidates' residence, photo galleries, bios, episode recaps, task overviews and team stats and strategy.
"This relationship with Mark Burnett Productions helps further Yahoo's commitment to provide the next generation of original and compelling broadband content for our consumers," said Jim Moloshok, senior vice president of entertainment and content acquisition. "At the same time, advertisers will have the opportunity to reach a large, engaged audience within an extremely attractive demographic."
Yahoo's advertising inventory for the site, which includes sponsorship, broadband video ads, and banner ads, will help brand advertisers reach the 18 to 49 year-old online audience attracted to "The Apprentice".
Burger King is matching rival McDonalds' music giveaway. People who buy a Whopper sandwich between now and October 3 get a code to download a free song from America Online's MusicNet service.
The promotion echoes one undertaken by McDonalds earlier this year in partnership with Sony's Connect music service. Music downloads have become a popular online reward to spur offline buying behavior -- especially for marketers eager to reach the youth demographic. Similar giveaways have seen Apple's iTunes team with Pepsi, Real Networks with Comcast and Napster with the UK newspaper The Sun.
The online center of the Burger King promotion is a new Web site at haveityourway.com, where participants enter the unique alphanumeric codes from the Whopper sandwich wrapper. The company recently re-adopted the "Have it Your Way" slogan when the company changed agencies to Miami-based firm Crispin Porter & Bogusky.
The Web site uses plenty of Flash and a musical backbeat. When code-carrying users arrive, they are linked to an AOL mini-site at bkmusic.aol.com. There, they are prompted to download the downloading software and select their free music. Haveityourway.com also offers music-related downloads like themed skins for users' Windows Media Players and CD cover designs, all of which carry the Burger King logo.
"We expect heavy participation both in restaurant and online for this promotion," said Russ Klein, chief marketing officer of Burger King.
The music promotion will be supported through national broadcast and print advertising, radio promotions, event placement and public relations.
Chrysler Group and America Online have launched an online teen driving video game for the AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) service. Road Ready StreetWise, created by WildTangent, will teach driver safety to teens as part of a larger Chrysler Group initiative to increase teens' awareness and understanding of driving risks.
"The new Road Ready StreetWise AIM game offers a cutting edge way to reach and teach teens," said Jeff Bell, a VP at Chrysler Group. "StreetWise is challenging and fun, but at the same time, it's a powerful tool to raise awareness of the responsibilities of driving. This new AIM game sets Chrysler Group apart from its competitors: We get it."
Ninety percent of teens and young adults aged 13-21 use instant messaging, and many of these IM users are also online to play games: 28 percent of teens and young adults who use IM do so to play online games with friends, according to AOL's research.
"Some people think of instant messaging solely as one-on-one teen chats, but it's really about shared communication experiences, at home, at work, for fun, and for educational purposes," said Edmund Fish, a senior vice president at AOL.
JupiterResearch on Thursday released its annual "E-mail Marketing Buyers Guide", which evaluates 28 ESPs -- 17 full and collaborative service providers, and 11 middle market providers.
In the full and collaborative service provider category the JupiterResearch Constellation recognizes seven market leaders: Bigfoot Interactive, Digital Impact, DoubleClick, E-Dialog, Exact Target, Silverpop and Yesmail. In the middle market category, Blue Sky Factory, Lyris and Skylist are identified as market leaders.
"While email service providers' application features have not changed significantly over the last year, larger differences can be found among the providers' usability, breadth of services and metric clarity," said David Daniels, Research Director, JupiterResearch.
Major differences among vendors include accuracy of deliverability metrics, and delivery and federal compliance features.
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Kevin Newcomb joined ClickZ in August 2004, covering search marketing and other online marketing topics. He has been reporting on web-based businesses since 2000.
Before the bubble burst, Kevin was a marketing manager for an online computer reseller, handling copywriting, e-mail marketing, search marketing and running the affiliate program.
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