Auction Universe Begins Marketing Campaign for Site Relaunch

Auction Universe said it plans a $10 million marketing campaign to promote its site re-launch on Sept. 16.

Selected to help were the romann group, R/GA Interactive, Modem Media.Poppe Tyson and Ruder-Finn Inc.

“In conjunction with our re-launch, we want to inform both the public and the industry of the innovative nature of Internet auctioning and the benefits of our redesigned Web site,” said Larry Schwartz, CEO and president of Auction Universe.

Auction Universe said it worked with NFO Interactive to gain better knowledge of what consumers want from the online auction experience. The testing involved multiple focus groups and questionnaires of several different online e-commerce populations, including both auction and non- auction users.

“The NFO research enabled our entire marketing team, particularly R/GA, which designed the new site, to understand that the most important factors to online auction users are trust, speed, and targeted information,” said Todd Merrill vice president, marketing, for Auction Universe.

The romann group in New York will handle all off-line aspects of the company’s upcoming ad campaign, and created a series of newspaper and magazine print advertisements that establish and brand Auction Universe. Advertising will also include spots on television and partnerships with Auction Universe’s media affiliates.

Modem Media.Poppe Tyson Inc. will develop all online elements for the campaign. Ruder-Finn will develop and execute a strategic program to position the company as “the ultimate home for Internet traders.”

Auction Universe, a Times Mirror company, is a pioneer in merging classified advertising and sales and the auction process via the Internet and a network of telephone, and print opportunities for buying and selling.

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