IMARKETING REPORT 07.02.02: Credibility, eBay, Media Buying, Pop-ups
>> We propose: I pledge allegiance to the Women of Enron of Playboy, for which they pose, butt-naked, under Hugh
>> Or: I pledge allegiance to Worldcom of Clinton, Mississippi, for which they hid, one capital charge, under Bernie

Good morning execs,

Because we here at al berrios iMarketing
are so very cool, and we love you, and
want you to have the sort of data you
just won't find anywhere else because
all other agencies suck, we're starting
an ongoing behavioral analysis of TV
viewers online and how their behavior
affects their use of your on-air and on-
line content and programming.


skip this and just go directly to the table of CONTENTS

The first study focuses on A14-24 on
their behavior on Friday nights, a trou-
blesome night for any broadcaster. We
select our survey candidates randomly
and using indirect questioning, with mini-
mal programming references, we execute
like a normal conversation, without reveal-
ing the purpose of the questioning, without
asking personal data, including ethnic back-
ground, and periodically evaluating the in-
teraction to extrapolate relevant data, which
is what this first study is. This analysis and
periodic reports will continue until we reach
apprx. five hundred participants, encompass
every night of the week, and at least two
other age groups.

In this first study, there were twenty
participants, from MI, TX, MN, CA,
FL, NY, and PA, 50/50 M/F, selected
from general interest chat communities.
It was conducted Saturday, June 30th,
2002, between the hours of 4pm & 7:30pm.

Among consistent favorites in this
group were Fox, MTV, MTV 2.
Other favorites included Comedy
Central, FX, ABC Family, WB, HBO
and surprisingly CBS. Fox, FX, and
ABC Family, formerly part of the
News Corp. family demonstrated
effective cross-pollination among their
young viewers, having some partici-
pants mentioning programming from
all three in the same sentence. As
much as 95% of participants neglected
to mention network media brands,
preferring cable. 5% didn't even
have cable, yet mentioned that they
go to friends' houses to watch it.

Fox and MTV exhibited the most
preferred programming with 'Simpsons'
and 'Osbournes' being mentioned by
almost every participant.

When consumers are asked if they
watched TV, a show that appears on
their favorite channel was mentioned
first about 80% of the time. In fact,
MTV was the only media brand that
was mentioned consistently before their
programming. This is a small indication
of how media brands are lacking marke-
ting support behind their own brands.

20% of the participants, all male, claim-
ed to not even use websites of their fave
media brands. Interestingly, without
prompting, about 15% mentioned that
they frequently used websites to check
out movie listings and information. This
shows us how much more aggressive
movie marketers are in driving consu-
mers to their content online than TV
marketers. Movie marketers have better
synergy with the internet than TV mar-
keters and as we've seen with this sum-
mer's larger box office, it's a strategy
that works in their benefit to differentiate
in the marketplace.

Stay tuned. More data to come.

Last week's TECHXNY was cool. It
was like a Toys R Us for techie adults.
Didn't learn much new, but it was worth
the trip. In lighter news, scientists dis-
cover that sex actually doesn't sell


Enjoy the rest.

1. BRANDS&INSIGHTS: Are You Credible?
2. CONSUMERFOCUS: Managing Consumers the eBay Way
3. MEDIA&CONTENT: Media Buying Clout vs. Niche Media Buying
4. MGMT&OPS: Public Enemy #1: Pop-Ups?

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1. BRANDS&INSIGHTS: Are You Credible?

It's that time again when we quantify
a website's credibility or believability.
Stanford defined, then surveyed consumers
to find out the credibility of websites.
Turns out, quick response to questions
rated highest in making a site credible,
while broken links made sites look least
credible. Comprehensive info with sources,
author credentials, references, and search
capabilities round out top 5 things that
consumer say make a site credible.

BOTTOM LINE: Every year, Stanford
and Co. put out this survey, and still
people are putting crap online. If you
don't have the resources to make your
site "fully credible", no prob, take a look
at the .pdf survey, and see if maybe you
can hook up the things that are most
easy to do.

READ MORE: (pdf)

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2. CONSUMERFOCUS: Managing Consumers the eBay Way

Taking the concept of community to a
whole new level, eBay extends their
employee benefits to customers. News-
week's cover story on June 17 really put
the company into perspective, with regards
to consumer traffic and the fanaticism to
which consumers regard eBay. And the
cool part is that eBay knows why - they
listen to everything their customers have
to say and actually respond, whether good
or bad. Well, to continue the behavior that
has made them the latest cult brand, they
are now entrenching the eBay brand deeper
into their consumer's psyche. (Full story is
that this is only for die hard consumers that
generate hundreds of thousands in sales,
and plenty of fees for eBay. eBay rational-
izes that these people don't have real jobs
since they spend all their time on eBay, so
they wanted to hook them up, in a win-win

BOTTOM LINE: eBay understands
the strength of their customers. They
understand that eBay cannot work from
exec decisions alone, so they request,
get, and reply to thousands of customers
daily. Interestingly enough, American-
governance-group ICANN recently voted
to not allow ordinary surfers have say in
their voting proceedings. These guys
manage domain names and don't feel that
consumers know enough to help them
police the web. They even want to charge
a 25 cents tax on new domain purchases.
The backlash from this will be serious.
Especially since we've seen, via eBay,
that consumers can police themselves
and do play a major role in the success
or failure of an organization. Can you
see why the focus of corporate America
has been "customer-centric" for years?
Using this simple approach, eBay
has gone from a $46 million dollar com-
pany in '98 to a $400 million dollar com-
pany today, from $9 billion in sales. If
only everyone managed their customers
the eBay way.


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3. MEDIA&CONTENT: Media Buying Clout vs. Niche Media Buying

In last week's Advertising Age (the
industry trade magazine), the mega-size
of some players (media buyers and media
sellers) during the TV upfront (the annual
pre-selling of broadcast media) was ques-
tioned as being too slow, not nimble, and
generally good for everyone since these
big guys actually drove up pricing to levels
higher than last year. Yes, their clout got
them discounts on pricing, however, it can-
celed out since they unintentionally drove
up prices to higher levels than the prior up-
front. So what does this have to do with
the internet?

BOTTOM LINE: These same mega-
players are the folks online content pu-
blishers have to talk to to sell inventory.
And because these guys are so big that
they're only interested in lots and lots of
impressions, they go to the Yahoo's and
AOLs. How can a smaller content pu-
blisher compete then? It's called niche,
and you've been hearing it since July 2001
when this newsletter launched. Is your
content too broad, get focused. Is your
audience small, then sell their responsive-
ness to your content and ads. But here's
another cool thing you can do: now,
thanks to this new "day-parting" concept
for internet inventory, you can charge a
premium for your inventory. But here's
a valid argument from the VP of Online
Media at MRM Partners - Zentropy "In
broadcast, different day parts are given
a premium because they deliver more
people per spot run in a more attentive
environment (think am/pm drive-time for
radio or prime time for TV). On the In-
ternet, we serve ads to an individual user.
Until there is some way to prove that
reaching that single user (or those
500,000 users) between eight am and
five pm is more valuable than reaching
them between 7 pm and 11 pm, why on
earth would I pay a premium?" This is
the sort of thinking that had the internet
pegged as a direct medium for a long
time. The At-Work Branding Network
launched two weeks ago by leading
news sites has set out to prove that the
internet can in fact be used to brand, to
a previously underleveraged mass of
people that, believe it or not, TV can't
reach. So, get your traffic reports ready,
focus your content, and get on the band-
wagon now, before everyone else starts
flooding the market with "day-part" audiences.

Linnett, Richard and Friedman, Wayne, "Sellers: Mega-shops slow in upfront", Advertising Age, June 24, 2002 p 3

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4. MGMT&OPS: Public Enemy #1: Pop-Ups?

Some of the same people leading the
charge with the At-Work Branding
Network are also leading another
charge - the destruction of Gator,
an online advertising and information
storage company. Here's why: Gator
is embedded in lots of popular software
that people download into their computers,
mostly Kazaa the p2p transfer program.
Because of that, Gator has been install-
ed like a 50 million times. Supposedly,
the company claims to be like an e-wallet,
(although I've never been asked for my
info to be stored.) In fact, what Gator
does best is serve pop-up ads. But here's
the rare thing, it serves quality ads, when
they're most relevant (i.e. Bank of America
ads when I'm at Very
cool. Unlike ads from sites, Gator ads
don't hog up bandwidth, so they pop-up
quickly, always in the same location,
so you always know where to look.
Using the bank ads example, Citibank
would claim that this technology
violates copyright laws since they feel
consumers think Gator ads originate
from the content publisher, giving them
instant credibility. Although I personally
feel that the ads themselves give them
credibility, I can understand the gripe.
The ads are so high quality, and so
targeted, they're almost better than
the ads content publishers offer up.
If it wasn't for Gator's success, in fact,
I don't think they would have lasted this
long in the courts. Gator obviously
claims that "there is no copying or mo-
dification of the plaintiffs' Web sites" or
other material, so their business is lawful.
But if you are one of the 10 plaintiffs,
you just want to get them stopped.

BOTTOM LINE: Gator has realized
that rather than developing their own
content, they'll just embed themselves
in software people actually want. The
problem is that the software that people
want is used to infringe copyrights, so
the big guys use this to their advantage
to make Gator seem really bad. Gator's
strategy, although a little under-handed,
isn't actually that bad. They make sure
there are plenty of opportunities to not
install their software wherever their
software is encountered. Gator has
overcome the big guys by acknowledging
what consumers want, and I find that
once again, the big guys are all about
protecting their turf more than giving
customers what they really want: quality,
relevance, convenience, and doesn't hog
up bandwidth. I bet that if the NYTimes
would have come up with this Gator idea,
there wouldn't even be a lawsuit right now.


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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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