IAR Bits and Bytes for Tuesday

Ad-Supported E-mail Program Crosses One Million User Mark

Digital wireless and electronic messaging company Qualcomm said that more than one million people have become users of its free, banner ad-supported desktop Eudora email software since its introduction seven months ago.

Each banner is displayed for a minimum 75-second duration while the user is active in the program, the company said.

Qualcomm says research indicates that 39 percent of its users buy online monthly, and thirty percent have a graduate degree; forty-five percent earn more than $50,000 per year.

The apparent consumer acceptance of the Qualcomm product indicates a widespread market for ad-supported software. Several other players, such as Radiate and Conducent, are working with software developers to introduce ad-supported applications.

Rock The Vote to Use Superstitial PSAs

Rock the Vote the Los Angeles-based non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging young people to participate in the political process rolled out a series of public service announcements using Unicast’s Superstitial pre-cached rich media interstitial format.

Designed by branding agency Collaborate, Rock the Vote Superstitials will run on pro-bono media space contributed by Web sites including AltaVista, BlackVoices.com, E!Online.com through Election Day, November 7th.

The 20-second ads encourage viewers to consider major campaign issues, using controversial imagery like guns and electric chairs.

The ads also encourage users to take action, the organizers say. For example, interactive elements in the ads allow users, when viewing an image, such as an electric chair, to scroll over either a “yes” or “no” voting clickboxes — and immediately be shown a opposing argument.

The visual impact of these images, coupled with the sting of a counter-argument, engages online users and compels them to take action, the organization says.

Users can then visit the Rock the Vote Web site, register to vote, send an email to the Gore or Bush campaigns, or pass the Rock the Vote message to a friend.

Organizers say the online campaign comes at a perfect time — during the first presidential election year in which voters can register online.

MatchLogic, Looking Glass Team

Excite@Home’s online marketing division MatchLogic Tuesday announced a strategic partnership with traditional market research company Looking Glass.

MatchLogic will integrate LookingGlass’s Cohorts market research into its DeliverE targeted opt-in email platform to the table. Cohorts profiles and segments U.S. households, giving MatchLogic another characteristic by which to target consumers.

The two partners will be cross-selling and cross-promoting the other’s products, they said.

GiantBear Taps Advertising.com for Wireless Ad Delivery

Ad serving and technology company Advertising.com and WAP tech firm GiantBear announced a partnership identifying Advertising.com as the preferred provider of wireless marketing and advertising products to GiantBear’s WAP publishing clients.

Advertising.com offers several wireless ad products, including SMS text messaging and full-screen ad serving.

GiantBear provides wireless data and mobile commerce products for businesses, including portal development and hosting and localized content delivery.

The companies also announced that Compaq, through its ad agency Foote, Cone & Belding, has contracted to run a wireless Internet advertising campaign under the partnership.

Syncom Invests $15 Million in TMXinteractive

Venture capital firm Syncom, is investing $15 million in TMXinteractive, a provider of television-style email advertising and related technologies.

TMX embeds Flash content directly into the body of an email and handles serving and delivery.

Proceeds will be used to open and staff ten additional domestic offices and four international offices during the next year and a half. TMX also said it will invest a considerable amount of resources in research and development..

In addition, the company will mount an aggressive national marketing campaign to introduce TMX’s technology and email delivery systems to marketers across the country.

TMX has already developed email marketing campaigns for several high-profile companies, including SAP and Calvin Klein.

Batnet1 Launches Ad Network

Affinity marketer Batnet1 said it has rolled out an affinity-based ad network, allowing merchants to place ads and run promotions on the Web sites of various affinity groups.

Affinity groups are often valued by marketers because they allow an easy way to target based on interest or occupational group membership.

Batnet1 creates sites and marketplaces for affinity groups, and the new Affinity Ad Network, at its launch, will run ads from twenty merchants across 90 Batnet1-created affinity marketplaces.

The National Association for Female Executives and the American Federation of Musicians are among the first publishers participating in the Affinity Ad Network.

Traffic Interactive Handles FT.com Viral Campaign

Online marketer Traffic Interactive announced the launch of an online viral marketing campaign on behalf of the Financial Times’ FT.com.

The campaign, which will run through the autumn months, will include banner, email and viral marketing components, including four games that the companies say convey FT.com’s expertise in business and finance matters in a light-hearted manner.

Traffic is working with sister agency BHWG to promote the FT.com site through online media and direct mail.

The company previously conducted an email and re-branding campaign for the FT.yourmoney site.

TopClick ChooseYourMail Partner in Marketing Pact

Privacy-minded search engine TopClick said it has entered into a joint marketing and revenue-sharing agreement with opt-in email company ChooseYourMail.com.

TopClick offers private, ad-free, cookie-free searches using technology from search engine Google. ChooseYourMail.com offers opt-in promotions but says it does not resell lists or collect personal data.

Through the deal, ChooseYourMail.com will insert links to the TopClick search engine into all of the future emails that it sends out to its subscribers.

TopClick will receive an ongoing revenue-sharing commission from ad sales in emails that ChooseYourMail sends to any TopClick-referred customers.

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