• Agency Consolidation Not The Status Quo
    Contrary to popular belief, not all brands consolidate their work under a single agency umbrella. Where's the creative flavor? Bob Liodice, CEO of the Association of National Advertisers, summed it up best in the Adweek article: "Why would an advertiser look to be putting all its eggs in one basket?" Coca-Cola, Target, Wal-Mart, Motorola, Macy's and Sony Electronics are examples of major companies employing multiple agencies.
  • Madison Ave to Video Gamers: We Like You. We Really Like You
    Ads have been placed in video games for years now, but not until Nielsen Entertainment started measuring in-game product placement did Madison Ave. take note. Advertisers spent $75 million last year on in-game product placement. Nielsen predicts that number will skyrocket to $1 billion by 2010. Game producers hope to devise a system where advertisers purchase ad space in video games the same way they buy ads on TV.
  • Looking Forward To Jon Stewart's Oscar Gig
    The publicity machine has started gearing up to promote Jon Stewart's hosting of the Oscars broadcast March 5, with his appearance on "Today" (he begged Katie Couric to come back from Italy already), and a piece in The New York Times detailing his preparations for the show. The article is full of snappy quotes, including this: "Asked if any particular celebrity should fear the wrath of Mr. Stewart's tongue, ['Daily Show' Executive Producer Ben] Karlin warned: 'Meryl Streep has gotten a free ride for too long. She's going down.'" Also check out the sidebar chart of audience numbers for …
  • 'AOL Coaches' Get Pretty Good Review
    New York Times critic Virginia Heffernan reviews the “AOL Coaches” series, noting that its appearance heralds the “long-anticipated convergence of Internet and television,” in which people watch TV “during the workday, in offices, at their computers, sitting up straight in unupholstered desk chairs. No wonder, then, that the latest programmers--people trying to create sustainable, popular, commercial Internet television--are incorporating workday attitudes of diligence, can-doism, detail-orientation and, above all, procrastination into new shows.” She dislikes the Star Jones Reynolds workshop on romance (“exhaustingly ordinary”), but gives thumbs up to other presenters, including business books authors Stephen Covey and Tom Peters. …
  • Media Chips--Just Off The Old Block--Also Have Them On Their Shoulders
    What is it about the tykes of media tycoons? First Lachlan Murdoch tussles with papa Rupert, leading to his abrupt departure from the family store--News Corp. Then tensions emerge between Cablevision patriarch Chuck Dolan and heir apparent James. Now Brent Redstone is suing father Sumner in an attempt to dissolve the family business, National Amusements, which controls both CBS Corp. and Viacom Inc. The family feud may indeed prove to be nationally amusing. Details of Brent's grievances, outlined in the suit filed last week, are, as The New York Times reports, "at first blush more lurid than threatening" to the …
  • NBC U Puts Heat On Video File-Sharing
    NBC Universal is putting the heat on video file-sharing services such as YouTub.com to remove hundreds of copyrighted clips derived from NBC U's networks. The action, which was prompted by the extensive downloading of a wildly popular "Saturday Night Live" skit, "Lazy Sunday," has been expanded to clips ranging from "Will & Grace" to NBC's Olympics coverage.
  • Direct Scores 10th Consecutive Quarter Of Growth
    The direct marketing industry recorded its 10th consecutive quarter of growth during the fourth quarter of 2005, according to results of a regular tracking study released Friday by the Direct Marketing Association. The DMA's Quarterly Business Review found that direct marketers boosted average sales 12.4 percent over the fourth quarter of 2004.
  • French Court Rules Against WPP In Aegis Client-Poaching Dispute
    WPP, already the subject of several legal inquiries, faces new legal disclosures related to charges that it illegally poached clients from media buying rival Aegis Group. France's Supreme Court last week ruled that WPP must release documents surrounding the case to Aegis.
  • I Want Candy: Daily Candy Goes On Auction Block
    Robert Pittman, a former executive at AOL, spent $3.5 million for controlling stake in a small online e-mail publishing venture in 2003. What a difference three years makes. That small business, Daily Candy, has grown from one newsletter targeting trendy New York women to 11 newsletters published for additional big cities, including Chicago, San Francisco and London. And it's time to capitalize on the company's success. Pittman put the business up for sale and insiders estimate the company could command upwards of $100 million from potential suitors.
  • Sirius Loses Money, But Gains Subscribers
    Sirius Satellite Radio reported a fourth-quarter loss of $311.4 million, or 23 a share. The company lost $261.9 million, or 21 cents a share, the same quarter last year. Looking for the silver lining, let's check out Sirius' subscriber rate: The company added 1.1 million net subscribers in the fourth quarter and ended 2005 with a grand total of 3.3 million subscribers in its belt, triple the number of subscribers the company had one year ago. Count the popularity of Howard Stern and the Sirius' airing of National Football League games as factors contributing to its subscription hike.
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