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Good Morning Execs,

Starting next week, OPPORTUNITIES
will undergo a name change to the al berrios
IMARKETING REPORT and will arrive
in your inbox with the subject line:

Why the change? 1) We're changing.
Our business is growing & we wanted
to make sure that all our contact points
to you accurately represented the value
we hope to contribute to your marketing
operations; 2) I felt the name OPPOR-
TUNITIES no longer encapsulated
our niche, reporting and analyzing of in-
ternet related marketing disciplines im-
portant to your business; 3) By integrating
our business name into our most impor-
tant link to you, this newsletter, we rein-
force it's relevance to you and hopefully,
you won't delete it before reading it.
Thanks for the motivation, Ms. Weil.

In addition, we will start using better
English grammar, (including capitalizing
where appropriate), and maintaining
an easy to read consistency in this news-
letter. As you'll notice, we've divided
our coverage into 8 major departments,
consisting of brief 15 (or less) -line
paragraphs, & followed by our traditional
BOTTOM LINE paragraph, our analysis.
will be integrated into the opening commentary
using capped words to indicate topic upon
scanning. The goal of all this is to present
our insight so it's more useful to you &
ultimately, profitable. As always, there
won't be any advertising in this newsletter.
I do it because I love to do it.

We now resume to our regular commentary:

Now, you all know I'm a big proponent
of how the internet is headed towards
NICHE content, but I found a few sites
this week that over do "niche":

(new line of dolls debuted @ '02 Toy Fair)

If you're going to own your niche, start
with a short URL. That's all I have to say
about that. Then, work on not insulting your
customers by referring to them as "ghetto".

AT&T Wireless' mLife campaign has got
people confused. Turns out MetLife is more
closely associated with the new brand and
has even experienced a boost in awareness
as a result of the heavy campaigning by AT&T.
Way to go, AT&T. Agency account planners
are supposed to foresee stuff like this.
AT&T's agency, O&M, is clearly overpaid.

Funny how the dot.com craze doesn't look
so bad after ENRON, Arthur Anderson, Kmart,
and Global Crossing. Barclays (an investment
bank) even fired 5 bankers because they tried
to expense a little too much ($62,700) for
dinner at some fancy restaurant. That's probably
why so many companies are hiring older
"more experienced" execs to guide them thru
tough times, but lets face it, "more experienced"
is just another term for "well-connected", b/c
frankly, after Enron, does experience really mean
anything? What happens when business flows
like water again, though? Do the graybeards
get the boot? Do the up-and-comers that
worked liked horses to lead their companies
quit b/c they're not appreciated?

NYC has requested EBAY halt trading of
items from WTC tragedy, "citing it's 'nau-
seating' that sellers profit from tragedy."
EBay said no, and I agree with their stance,
since eBay doesn't actually sell anything.
Their customers do. And their customers have
every right to be the scum they are without
having big brother interfere. But it's interesting
how eBay's success and people's behavior
online are so misunderstood. They'll probably
get sued, but eBay will win in the end b/c
there's no denying the truth about the Internet:
that it's all about interaction & choice, not

So yeah, the GRAMMYS were last week. Ho hum.
I think the most interesting entertainment news
of the month has got to be the CHER comeback.
If you haven't heard, she's got a new album,
"Living Proof". Nuff said. In other entertainment
news, DENZEL signs $20 MM deal to star in new
pic "Out of Time". Why is this interesting? His
potential to draw the African American female
has finally been recognized and given it's due worth.

And finally, don't forget to watch the WTC tragedy
on Sunday, March 10 at 9 p.m courtesy of CBS.
But what's even more disturbing is that NEXTEL
is sponsoring the section of the CBS website with
information on this program. I can understand
looking for ad opportunities that cut through the
clutter, but is this sort of sponsorship really helpful,
especially since this program has already inflared
legal, political, and emotional tensions.

1. BRAND: EQUITY, can you do what Boeing does?
2. BRANDRESEARCH: TRENDS, leverage lists
3. THECONSUMER: COMMUNITY, credit protection marketplace
4. CONSUMERFOCUS: GLBT, appeal to my desire to choose you
5. MEDIA/ADSALES, advertisers look for niche
6. MANAGEMENT: COMPETITION, how to handle them
7. OPERATIONS: YOURREV, how to charge for content
8. SALES, make 'em sell for their pay

>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

Boeing wants to "translate the substantial
brand equity Boeing enjoys with its com-
mercial airplane business to its six major
units" which include finance & military brands.
This brand equity translation will probably
be in the form of a rebranding all their di-
visions under the Boeing name so customers
feel secure in dealing with a larger entity.
Can something like this be done online?

BOTTOM LINE: Yes, and will provide
you with niche vehicles through which you
can reach highly targeted audience segments.
However, before taking such a risk with
your brand, you must have a logical plan in
place that makes sense to all people involved
with the change and your consumer. Test
your plan, tweak it, then follow it to the letter.
Just think of Diet Coke's '85 disaster vs.
Mountain Dew: Code Red's '01 triumph.


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

What makes you purchase a magazine
off the newsstands? Is it a catchy picture?
Is it a buzzword within your industry or
used to describe your lifestyle? Or is it
something as simple as a number used to
indicate the size of a list contained inside
that should you read, will result in the best
sex, recipes, exercise ever?

BOTTOM LINE: Can you believe some-
thing so simple actually works? Just walk
by a newsstand and look for yourself. No
longer is editorial distinction good enough.
But why lists? Attraction is part it, but it
also makes a title a keeper. Why throw
away a list of popular vacay spots or sex
positions if not useful now? Keep it for
later, right? With good printers selling cheap,
emails kept for years, & bookmarking, sites
can effectively use these tactics to keep new
and loyal surfers coming back.

>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

I trust consumer behavior to gauge every-
thing because it's always right. All the
creative in the world doesn't do you any
good if your audience isn't responsive.
Well, a fascinating marketplace exists that
savvy marketers should check out in order
to understand consumer behavior: it's called
the credit protection market, which is the
buying/selling of the credit protection contracts
traders purchase from credit issuers to protect
from risky credit lines.

BOTTOM LINE: Turns out traders of these
contracts knew Enron was doomed 2 months
earlier than everyone else based on the high
costs of Enron's credit protection. This is the
power of communities. Off- or online, they
can successfully be leveraged by you to get
insight into your customers, gain competitive
intelligence, or simply test new product ideas
prior to launching, saving you millions in costs.
If you don't have one already, get a message
board on your website now.

>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

Queer As Folk. Queer Duck. OZ. 6
Feet Under. Will & Grace. With the
success of so much GLBT programming,
is it any wonder that Viacom is putting
together two of it's strongest brands to
form a 24-hr gay cabler? What does this
mean with regards to cultural trends?

BOTTOM LINE: Persons identifying them-
selves as gay just happen to respond better
to advertisers addressing them & their needs
directly. Duh. Talk "street", and you'll get
teens interested; talk Spanish, and you'll get
Latinos interested. It's just how it is. Not
because these segments don't understand
general audience messaging, but because
people choose their lifestyles the same way
they choose your brand, leading to the fun-
damental truth that if you want to reach your
desired aud, you have to appeal to their
desire to choose your brand.


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

There is no doubt that there has been a
rash of magazine closings, executive shuf-
fles, & other bold changes in attempts to
just be able to pay them bills. But there
is something that has been consistent with
offline mags: new titles that cater to con-
sumer trends, mindsets, and cultural shifts,
rather than general broad consumer interest
titles, are thriving.

BOTTOM LINE: Everyone is whining
about a bad advertising marketplace, but
all signs from advertisers indicate that it's
the best time to launch a new venture. Ad-
vertisers want very targeted reach, they want
niche, b/c they are finally understanding that
their consumers prefer niche. Your publica-
tion can only have 10,000 reach and it will
still be successful b/c you're only reaching
the exact 10,000 your advertiser wants to


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

Quick, what's the quickest way to loose
a client to a competitor? By telling your
client how awful your competitor's products
are. How is this possible? Perhaps your
client didn't even know s/he had a choice
and thanks to your comments, they're curious
to see what your competitor can offer them.
Remember, it's always about choice. The
same way you'll check out 10 stores looking
for the best prices, so will your client.

BOTTOM LINE: So how do you prevent
a customer from going to a competitor?
You can't. And you shouldn't try, either.
Never talk about your competition. But if
you do, don't talk ill of them. You're con-
stantly seeing competing products compared
on TV & politicians claiming their opponents
suck, but by wasting your resources on poin-
ting out your competition's weaknesses, you're
not telling your customers why you're better.
Let the quality of your product speak for itself.
And always ask your consumers how you're
doing. B/c in the end, you have to please them,
not change their minds about someone else.


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

There are two interesting trends in what
online businesses are doing to bolster their
revenues: take on creative duties normally
handled by client's ad agencies and charging
for news content. It's practically scandalous,
that some dot.coms are trying to replace a
client's ad agency, but as clients look for
expertise in dealing with their consumers,
they look towards the content publishers
that got them together for direction in how
to speak to them. And if it costs you
money to collect & publish news, then
why shouldn't you charge for it?

BOTTOM LINE: By doing the job of ad
agencies, publishers can make more money.
But there's a risk: Content publishers also
take the fall when creative doesn't work.
Sure you understand your audience, but do
you really understand how to sell them tooth-
paste and insurance? A better example: sure
you know about your rights, but would you
defend yourself in court? Always leave it to
a pro. If you want to boost your revenue,
focus on ways to charge for your news without
scaring away your readers. By having editorial
previews, exclusive content, lists of interesting
things, and focusing on a niche, you can be
profitable online.


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

If you want to upset me, tell me that sales
is the worst job in the world. I used to
think that way myself, until I started trying
to convince people to hire my agency.
That's selling. Everyone sells - lawyers,
doctors, architects. Without good sales
efforts, no one would ever get paid. This
week, the Boston office of Arnold (an ad
agency) terminated 9% of it's staff since it
"has also had a dreadful new business re-
cord of late, failing to win a single sizeable
account through a review in 2001."

BOTTOM LINE: There's no job where a
person doesn't have to sell to get & sell to
do. When I recruit, I always encounter
candidates that claim that they don't do
sales, and feel that they would be much
more effective designing flash sites or some-
thing. (Another thing, why is anyone with a
computer and internet access a flash website
designer?!?) What good is this skill if it can't
convince a web surfer to try it? I attempt to
tie my agency's pay to their individual perfor-
mance, which always involves selling some-
thing, whether a website or a client. And
guess what? It works. Tom Siebel figured
it out and now he's a billionaire. Nuff said.


>>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>> >>>>>

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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