In response, five of the best-known online publishers today announced the formation of an advertising sales consortium known as the "At-Work Brand Network."
"We're doing something that is unique to the online advertising space, that you would not see in traditional media," said CBS MarketWatch EVP of Sales & Marketing, Scot McLernon, adding that the network is “the perfect environment for clients to work creatively with five sites at once, to reach the most sophisticated readers using the Web during the work day."
The Network includes CBS MarketWatch, CNET Networks, NYTimes.com, USATODAY.com and weather.com. Interactive agencies of record, Avenue A and Whitehorse have positioned their client, AT&T Wireless, as the Network's launch customer.
Traditionally, the at-work audience has been a difficult audience for advertisers to reach. Now, research shows that the Internet has become the leading source of information for business professionals at work. The new At-Work Brand Network provides advertisers with broad access to this valuable, largely unduplicated audience of Internet users who are using the Web from work.
"The At-Work Brand Network is a perfect fit for our online marketing strategy for AT&T Wireless," said Clark Kokich, president of Avenue A, the interactive agency responsible for AT&T Wireless' online advertising efforts. "No other medium allows advertisers to broadly reach these valuable consumers during the day. This is further evidence of the power of the Internet as an advertising vehicle."
The Network provides advertisers with the efficiencies of a one-order, one-report system, compared with dealing with five separate publishers. The agency or client only needs to submit their creative advertising units to one party for distribution across the entire Network. According to Media Metrix, the five sites in the At-Work Brand Network provide advertising clients with an at-work audience of more than 17 million unduplicated individuals. This represents over 43% of the total at-work online audience.