MSN Doubles Commitment to Ad Council

Microsoft’s MSN will donate $7 million in media and cash to the non-profit Ad Council in 2005, doubling its support from 2004.

“All of the major online players have really stepped up,” said Barbara Shimaitis, senior VP of interactive services for the Ad Council.

Besides providing the typical banner space, MSN will also create a branded entertainment experience for a yet-to-be determined Ad Council campaign. That effort will run this summer. America Online is providing similar support for an upcoming Ad Council campaign, though the organization wouldn’t divulge what public service campaign will be deployed.

“We’re just beginning to do more of those this year. This is one of the first initiatives of that kind,” said Shimaitis. “It’s very hard, naturally, for the Ad Council, working in a donated media model, to get that kind of inventory.”

MSN news site MSNBC will run monthly homepage roadblocks for Ad Council campaigns in 2005. The first of these ran last month for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Emergency Preparedness campaign.

The new donation level places MSN among the biggest interactive media players that contribute to the Ad Council. Last year, the organization received more than $1.7 billion in donated media, with Internet support valued at $108 million, or 6.4 percent of the total.

Related reading