Switchboard Signs Microsoft to One-Year Sitewide Sponsorship

Switchboard Inc. in Westboro, MA, the majority-owned Internet directory service subsidiary of Banyan Systems Inc., said Microsoft signed a one-year sponsorship deal.

The pact calls for the purchase of sitewide advertising positions on the Switchboard Internet site for four Microsoft Internet properties: the Microsoft CarPoint online automotive service, the Expedia.com travel service; Microsoft Investor; and the soon-to-be-launched Microsoft HomeAdvisor, online real estate service.

Each property will be a sitewide Switchboard sponsor in its respective category–Auto, Travel, Finance or Real Estate. Spending details were not disclosed.

In addition, Microsoft advertisements will fill a number of highly targeted, category-specific ad spots in both the Switchboard Yellow Pages and SideClick, Switchboard’s Web searching service.

“Switchboard is one of the strongest buys on the Internet because of its tremendous reach, audience demographics, and breadth of advertising options,” said Marty Taucher, network communications manager, interactive media group, Microsoft.

“Microsoft is a powerful addition to our site and sends a clear message to future prospects regarding the value of advertising on Switchboard,” said Dean Polnerow, president of Switchboard. “Directories are one of the most effective ways to target advertising on the Web. We are pleased that Switchboard’s advertising business model continues to be reinforced by top tier companies like Microsoft.”

Switchboard claims 40 million searches each month and said it is among the 12 most active Web destinations, according to Media Metrix, the PC Meter Co.

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