Olympic Dreams for Online Advertisers

Online advertisers are hoping to turn the Winter Olympics into winter gold as they race to develop promotions and sponsorships.

CBS SportsLine, which has the official rights to the Games through the CBS network, signed up as sponsors Anheuser- Busch, AT&T, Bugle Boy Industries, Ford Motor Co., IBM, Preview Travel, Shell Oil Co., Sony, Visa USA, and Xerox, according to Advertising Age.

With CBS referring viewers to SportsLine in its Olympic broadcasts, the site will receive an estimated 100 million page views from the time the site launched in November through the end of February, Mark Mariani, executive vice president of SportsLine, was quoted as saying.

In addition to its sponsorship, AT&T is launching AT&T Olympic Trading Cards, a promotion created by Modem Media of Westport, CT. Being advertised on about 20 news and sports Web sites, the promotion encourages people to collect sets of interactive trading cards, which are entries in a sweepstakes to win a trip to the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney.

Not to be left out, push media companies are gearing up their services, too. InfoBeat, for instance, has already signed up 25,000 people for its daily Olympic content email service. IBM, which is sponsoring the official Olympic site, is the anchor sponsor on the push service. Strong Funds, REI, and American Express are also on board, AdAge said.

In addition, the PointCast Business Network launched a Winter Games Channel with sponsors including IBM, Kodak Picture Network and Founders Fund.

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