Good morning execs,

how about that Game?! FOX ratings probably
when through the roof last night, giving all those
advertisers that bought ads cheap (cheapest in
close to 10 years), their money's worth! that's
how to buy media. anyway, lots of interesting
news today. enjoy.

1. REVENUESTRATEGY: charging your community?
2. ADSTRATEGY: what media buyers look for
3. STATS: anything will get printed these days
4. EMAIL: buying trust
5. TRENDS: Googlewhacking???
6. HUMOR: new revenue opportunity: sueing
7. ROUNDTABLE: why agencies get fired
8. THEWEEK: recap of last week

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1. REVENUESTRATEGY: charging for access
to your community tools like message boards &
chat rooms has usually been a taboo strategy.
after all, after putting one up, content pubs usually
discover that they're their most trafficked section.
but this seems to be a trend among dot coms
seeking profitability. F-----company.com gets
about 1000 tips per week, but only reports on
about 75 of them. for full access to these tips
and comments from insiders, they're charging.
i reported nerve.com, the sex content pub, has
spun off its community into Spring Street, a
personals business, which is profitable by
handling other content pub personals. and
now Fool.com has joined the group by charging
for full access to their message forums, where
presumably one can get valuable investing tips.
(they claim their community has helped
members pay down dept and even helped
pass SEC fair disclosure laws. wow.)

BOTTOM LINE: f'dcompany.com is strategically
valuable for employers, VCs, banks, press. nerve
helps people find love, a HUGE industry, and Fool
is "legendary(?)" for giving power back to the small
investor. and all three have community members
that understand these valuable advantages to their
communities. if you can claim the same about your
community, you're wasting money by not charging.

::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: al berrios adstrategy ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::

Set the Right Price When Selling Your Home!
A good agent is the key to pricing your home
correctly and selling it quickly for top dollar.
Click here for a free service that allows you
to compare agents' commission rates and
experience. /<Compare before you sell>."
this message appeared in Lycos email message
to users with no other images or mention of the
company's name. does this sort of ad really
work in effectively branding an advertiser?
only #s tell, which i don't have. but this ques-
tion is why many traditional advertisers shy
away from the web. they're unsure about how
using messaging like this will fit into their
overall marketing efforts. yup, that's right.
just because you have inventory to sell doesn't
mean that advertisers want it. in fact, most
offers get turned down by advertisers because
they don't take into account the advertiser's
overall strategy. sure, it takes into account
"your" inventory, and maybe even their budget,
but if this Lycos example is the sort of inventory
you're selling, don't be surprised if it gets
turned down. (Lycos justifies this messaging
with volume. but guess what, when clicked on
leads back to a Lycos service, meaning they're
recycling their inventory.)

BOTTOM LINE: there's strategy involved
in media buying. it's not just about selling
and buying. the message has to be relevant
with the content. although many content
publishers online today observe this basic
principal of media, the adsales folks that
market media to advertisers, don't always
take this into account. it's ok, it's not their
job. their job is to sell. so what's the
solution? hire a strategy person for your
adsales to work with when preparing a pitch.
it'll make a world of difference in closing that

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3. STATS: "A new study by Internet Profiles
Corp. finds that U.S. advertisers are still not
convinced about the effectiveness of online
advertising. Web analytics firm I/PRO, which
is owned by TopicalNet Inc., surveyed 145
executives who buy online and offline advertising,
representing more than $12 billion in billings."
no where in this story is it mentioned which
execs were surveyed, their companies, their
industries, or even the companies that they've
worked with for hosting, serving, and internet
marketing strategy. "Survey: Multi-Channel
Buyers Worth Pursuing January 28, 2002
A DoubleClick study finds that consumers
are likely to spend more if they use the Web
in conjunction with buying in offline stores."
the survey goes on to reveal that consumers
actually spend more when they use several
different channels, instead of just one or two.
wow. how... revealing. i feel so informed.

BOTTOM LINE: with all due respect to the
gatherers of these impressive findings, these
surveys sound like desperate justifications
of their existences within these organizations.
not just for the gatherers, but the press that
picked them up. it's hard to believe the sh!t
that passes for news these days. folks, don't
believe for one minute that there's some sort
of huge corporate consensus that the web
sucks. when done right, it works, and they
know that. anyone controlling $12 B in
billings is using the web, so don't kid yourself.
and if you didn't know that your customers
spend more when they're at your store, using
your 800 #, and catalogue and website, then
you shouldn't even own a business, b/c you're
just using up resources that your competitor
could put to better use. similar sentiments were
originally expressed in adbumb.com, and i
can't help agreeing.


::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: al berrios email ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::

4. EMAIL: TRUSTe and ePrivacy launched
"Trusted Sender" seal program last week for
qualifying email and helping recipients identify
spammers easier. seal only works when email
is opened, meaning that there's still possibility
of spam and virus carrying email being opened.
and for this TRUSTe, a non-profit, will charge

BOTTOM LINE: if your users sign up to your
email, they trust you not to send them junk.
so, why would you pay these companies for
their seal? does it get you more trust with
your customers? and why should you pay for
trust, especially when spammers can pay for
it, too? whenever a recipient doesn't want
email sent from you anymore, they know
enough to send "remove" and expect never
to hear from you again, so, again, what's
the point of building trust with seal programs?
these seal programs became popular in 1997,
due to the lack of sophistication of email
advertisers back then. today, this is not as
significant an issue with so many other platforms
on which to reach consumers online and with
consumers being more web savvy. so, before
you waste money on any "seal program",
consult a pro (like al berrios).


::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: al berrios trends ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::

5. TRENDS: i spend so much working online,
that it's hard for me to imagine what other
people may be doing online, (besides chat-
ting, that is). well, it seems i've found my
answer, but with a very interesting twist
in how to reach consumers: "Have you
Googlewhacked? What do you get when
you cross a colonoscopy with a cockatiel?
The same thing you get when you cross
a cartographer with a hairball--a Googlewhack.
Named after the popular Google search
engine, Googlewhacks, and the game of
finding them (or Googlewhacking), are the
latest pursuit of legions of bored and in-
creasingly obsessed Web surfers searching
for the next big thing. The game starts
by typing two words into Google's search
bar, with the goal of obtaining a single
result. The ultimate goal of a Googlewhacker:
seeing the words 'Results 1-1 of 1' appear
in the upper right-hand corner of the screen."

BOTTOM LINE: the implications of this
are interesting. obviously, another activity
the average person enjoys doing online is
playing games (as evident by the success
of the new ad tool, advergaming), however
here's an example of a web tool not designed
for gaming being used just for that. the findings
are in line with how message boards evolved
from a community to share ideas to meet
new people. and it definitely vindicates the
use of iMarketing as a tool to effectively
market to consumers, since the concept of
iMarketing is to use free community tools
for the purpose of interacting with your
consumers with planned results. allow me
to clarify: just because you develop a tech-
nology for doing one thing doesn't mean it
can't end up serving another purpose when
released to the hyper imaginative minds of
the public. and, new uses means new
customers and ultimately greater opportunities.


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6. HUMOR: new revenue opportunity: sue
the pants off everyone: Unicast sues Eye-
blaster, Bluestreak and others for patent
infringement on superstitital, blatantly admitting
their goal is to get rid of competition, Find-
what, the pay-for-clicks search engine sues
Overture for patent infringement, parent of
GoTo.com, the first pay-for-clicks engine,
Body Solutions, manufacturer of health and
fitness products, sues all search engines for
trademark infringement, claiming they're
unlawfully making money from selling their
name for highest bid.

BOTTOM LINE: so when did good business
plan and good management skills stop being
requirements for staying in business?


::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: al berrios roundtable ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::

7. ROUNDTABLE: there's a must-do in the ad
world when dealing with a big-dawg client with
a big enough budget: the client must own the
medium. look at AT&T Wireless' new "mLife"
campaign. it's everywhere. that's a $400 million
account. look at Orbitz, the online travel booking
engine owned by the major carriers. every site
accepts their pop-unders. they're nice and they
dominate the format online, popping up just
about as much as the x-10 camera or the casino ad.
it's effective branding and has legitimized the
format for other large advertisers. the creative
is great, and the message clear. so, why did the
agency handling this account get fired last week
by Orbitz? according to Orbitz, their priorities
have changed. and so must their effective adver-
tising, i guess. i usually give traditional agencies
a hard look in this newsletter, but even i must admit
a campaign that, no matter how annoying, actually
did something positive for online advertising, in-
cluding the improvement of creative as a whole
online. but when you have 5 big corporations
managing decisions for one project, you're bound
to get retarded decisions like this.


::::: ::::: ::::: ::::: al berrios theweek ::::: ::::: ::::: :::::

8. THEWEEK: so, Enron is still dominating
the news, and why wouldn't it, it's like
a real life soap opera. Chairman won't
testify in Congress b/c he says it sounds
too much like a prosecution rather than
question/answer, a very damaging report
by the Hill calls Enron actions criminal,
all other execs are taking the 5th to avoid
condemning themselves, and to top it off
Global Crossing's $11 billion bankruptcy
has caused even more scrutiny on Anderson's
handling of their books, too. dayum!
Anderson is just not going to make it past
this one; "Unicast Communications Corp.
unveiled the Superstitial 300, a new online
ad format that lets advertisers more easily
convert TV commercials to the Web"; Penn
slaps injunction on Miss Cleo to stop harassing

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Disclaimer: The recommendations, commentary and opinions published herein are based on public information sometimes referenced via hyperlinks. Any similarities or likeness to any ideas or commentary from any other sources not referenced is purely coincidental. al berrios & co. cannot control any results occurring from advice obtained from this publication nor any opinion(s) conveyed by any reader of this publication.

(c) 2001-2005. All Rights Reserved. al berrios & company, inc. Published by al berrios & co. This Report may not be reproduced or redistributed in any form without written permission from al berrios & co., subject to penalty.


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