Stealth Partners Go Public to Focus on Brands in Context

  |  March 18, 2010   |  Comments

Gorilla Nation, AtomicOnline, and others now have a new public face and name: Evolve Media.

A behind-the-scenes, formerly un-named parent company that quietly owned Gorilla Nation, AtomicOnline, Double Helix, and Springboard now has a public face and a name: Evolve Media.

Evolve said the new partnership will help marketers launch integrated digital campaigns focused on brand exposure based on contextual placement. "We basically owned a parent holding company we never brought out to the public," said Aaron Broder, co-founder of Evolve and CEO of Gorilla Nation. "We are branding the parent so that we are enabling marketers to take full advantage of the ideas we can create to make holistic campaigns on the publisher sites we own and those we represent."

Gorilla Nation is an ad rep company. AtomicOnline publishes popular sites including SheKnows.com, CraveOnline.com, TheFashionSpot.com, and GameRevolution.com. Springboard Publications makes digital videos, and Double Helix is a creative and interactive marketing firm formed by merging the creative teams of Gorilla Nation and AtomicOnline. Evolve offers a platform of more than 600 sites that reach 300 million people monthly.

Contending "click-through as a metric is dead," Broder stressed that Evolve is primarily focused on brand marketing as opposed to concentrating on advertising efficiency through performance initiatives. "Our whole thesis is that when you are solely focused on efficiency, you can end up hurting your brand rather than helping it," Broder said. "When all you are considering is placing media on sites that are out of context - using ad networks and demand-side platforms - you are unable to create a connection."

As an example of the type of synergistic brand marketing available with Evolve's linked companies, Broder pointed to a campaign created for Procter & Gamble's Aussie Hair Products. SheKnows.com worked with Aussie to create a multimedia hairstyle lounge, then partnered with Gorilla Nation to run co-branded ad units on some of its Web properties. These drove traffic back to the online lounge. A widget was also created and placed on some of Gorilla Nation's female-oriented sites.

"Through Evolve, we are able to come up with a great idea that can then be housed on the media properties we own and distributed on media properties we represent," Broder said.

He also pointed out advertisers using Evolve have an easy way to distribute campaigns to sites that differ widely in viewer demographics. "We now have the ability through Double Helix to provide marketers with a campaign focused on a single idea that can then be distributed to men, women, and various Gorilla Nation audiences."

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