Out to Launch

Yahoo! launches its "Life Engine" campaign. Visa, Trump, and a dumpster. Welcome to highlights of ad campaigns launched recently.

Yahoo! Inc. has launched a nationwide promotion to find stars for the next round of ads in its acclaimed "Life Engine" ad campaign. Until June 10, any U.S.-based Web user who has a great story to tell about Yahoo!'s products and services can vie for a role in a Yahoo! advertisement by submitting an essay of 150 words or less describing how Yahoo! is their Life Engine. Twelve finalists will be featured in video "screen tests" on the site, and beginning July 8, Yahoo! users can cast their votes online to determine the winners. The six winners will each appear in an upcoming Yahoo! advertisement and receive $2,000 cash. The TV and online ads showcase how consumers use Yahoo! products and services to drive their everyday lives. The ads feature Al Franken, Ben Stein, former California Governor, Gray Davis, as well as non-celebrity users, including a fire-eater, a chef and an 8th grade class treasurer. Soho Square created the campaign.



Visa's latest ad, "Rooftop," which launched last week, is designed to drive consumer use and reinforce the security protections of Visa Check Cards. The ad features Trump learning - the hard way - about the security his Visa Check Card affords him. When a gust of wind blows Trump's card out of his hand from atop Trump Tower, he rushes to a dumpster below to retrieve it. As Trump makes his way to the dumpster, a voiceover explains that Visa cardholders are not liable for fraudulent purchases made with their lost or stolen cards, regardless of the cardholder's bank account balance. The thirty-second ad will air nationally and was created by BBDO New York.

Ricoh Corporation, a provider of digital office equipment, has launched its most comprehensive national television campaign to date. The company's line of digital imaging products and services provide real business value by helping customers "Move Ideas Forward." To grab viewers' attention, the campaign features Louis Armstrong's Jazz standard, "I Get Ideas" as background for scenes that depict workers carrying out typical office tasks using Ricoh products to move their ideas forward. The "I Get Ideas" campaign launched May 5 and will continue through fall. The ads will run pre-, post- and in-game during every baseball game broadcast by Fox Sports Net and the Yes Network throughout the 2004 Major League Baseball season. The ads were created by Gigante Vaz Partners.

The Orange County Register launched two of its three "Take Back the Morning" TV commercials last week. The TV ads are extensions of the original Take Back the Morning commercial with the same characters in morning-related venues: an office, coffee shop, and kitchen. The first spot features a man taking a moment to enjoy the newspaper in his office, as co-workers frantically hustle around him eating donuts and making photocopies. The second spot is a woman relaxing and reading the newspaper in a busy coffee shop. The third ad launches July 5. All three ads are running locally during morning newscasts and on cable stations such as Comedy Central, TNT, E!, ESPN, and MTV for the next ten weeks. DGWB Advertising created the campaign.

Janus Capital Group launched a print and TV campaign emphasizing its commitment to delivering strong long-term performance, offering numerous investment choices, and earning investors' confidence "every step of the way." The ads debuted in April and show people walking up a flight of stairs, in an effort to reinforce Janus' mission of "getting investors where they want to go." The print ad appears in the "Mutual Fund Report" section of The New York Times, in the investment sections of The Wall Street Journal and USA TODAY and in United Kingdom, Europe and Asian editions of the Financial Times. The TV ad will air until June 13 on national cable networks - including CNN, CNBC, ESPN and Fox News - and during prime-time broadcasts in Denver, New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. followed up on its recently launched online and trade campaign by bowing a consumer ad campaign consisting of radio and TV components. Both ads highlight the theme: "Something new is happening every minute of every day to impact your business ... your investments ... your opportunities to enrich your life. is here to help." The 60-second radio and 30-second TV spots are initially running on the CBS radio network, with heavy rotation in New York City, and on CNBC, for a four-week flight ending this month. The radio ad was produced in-house.

BurrellesLuce, a media monitoring and analysis company, launched a global branding campaign, the first major marketing initiative for the company since the merger of the two firms. The brand campaign introduces a new corporate logo and the theme line "Work Intelligently," to communicate BurrellesLuce's focus on helping its clients to be more productive through enhanced knowledge and fast access to media information. The first campaign ad introduces the overall brand message. Next, a series of print and online ads that showcase how BurrellesLuce products enable people at corporations, professional associations and agencies to achieve greater productivity through enhanced business intelligence. Print ads will run in PR Week, O'Dwyer's PR Services Report, Public Relations Tactics and The Public Relations Strategist.The R&J Group designed the campaign.

In website launches this week:

deepPlay has launched Virgin's latest website. Virgin Pulse offers a line of 15 high-style and friendly-function personal electronics products sold exclusively at Target,, and Virgin Megastores. The site features product images and quick and easy-to-access manuals, warranties and quick start guides that provide an additional level of service and support for customers looking for further information or help.

American City Business Journals Inc. has launched a new portal called Bizwomen. The initiative includes the launch of 41 individual local market websites and a national portal to serve businesswomen. Each site will feature local business news, unique applications and advertising for women business owners and operators plus valuable tools and networking resources for women only. The annual fee for women business owners to be listed in the Bizwomen Directory is $35.99. Only women-owned businesses and companies where women represent a 75% leadership role will be featured on the Bizwomen Directory. Subscribers will also have access to all of the Bizwomen directories. So regardless of where they live, they can network with women across the country.

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