E*TRADE Launching $100 Million Integrated Campaign

As expected, E*TRADE Group Inc. announced a $100 million integrated ad campaign to launch its new destination Web site–‘the new E*TRADE.’

The aim is to distinguish E*TRADE as the brand of choice for individual investors in an increasingly populated industry.

“This is our most ambitious marketing campaign ever and comes at a time when our Web site has been re-engineered to take E*TRADE into the next millennium,” said Christos M. Cotsakos, president and CEO of E*TRADE Group. “Now that we have successfully established our brand in a highly competitive marketplace, we intend to take our message of self-empowerment, convenience and control direct to the consumer as we zero-in on building our account base.”

E*TRADE said it will be unveiling an array of television, radio, newspaper and magazine ads aimed to lure some of the more than 10 million to 12 million financially sophisticated consumers who use the Web for investment research but who do not yet have trading accounts on the Internet. E*TRADE currently has more than 500,000 accounts.

In addition to print and electronic buys, the marketing plan will leverage E*TRADE’s relationships with Internet sites such as Yahoo, AOL and ZDNet, as well as targeted alliances that E*TRADE has negotiated with CBS Sportsline and FOX TV. And for the first time, E*TRADE will begin a direct mail campaign, blitzing more than one million consumers with targeted incentive offers.

The TV spots poke fun at investing the old-fashioned way and cleverly portray online investing–and ‘the new E*TRADE’–as a way to take control and seize opportunity in today’s volatile markets. The ads were developed by New York-based Gotham Inc.

Modem Media.Poppe Tyson, E*TRADE’s San Francisco-based interactive agency of record, will coordinate online advertising and content sponsorship efforts. Pickholz Tweedy & Co. of New York handles direct mail efforts.

Jerry Gramaglia, senior vice president of marketing at E*TRADE, said the new campaign represents a strategic break from previous online broker ads. “Until now, the only distinguishing factor in our industry was price. With ‘the new E*TRADE’, and its innovative and powerful tools and information available free to the public, we are seeking to leap-frog the competition and take online investing to the next level.”

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