Consumers Union Retains WebAdvantage.net

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Consumers Union, publisher of Consumer Reports magazine, for the second year in a row asked interactive shop WebAdvantage.net, Aberdeen, MD, to buy online advertising.


The agency is charged with placing ads for the testing service's ConsumerReports.org site. Such ads promote the Consumer Reports Travel Letter's latest research comparing six online independent airline ticket-booking sites.


"Consumers Union wanted an online initiative to bifurcate their traditional PR one to help make consumers aware of their report findings as well as to raise awareness of the ConsumerWebWatch.org Web site," said Hollis Thomases, president of WebAdvantage.net.


"Our mandate was essentially to secure key placements on Web sites with broad U.S. audiences and to produce some effective, simple creative," she said.


The agency, which has clients such as George Washington University and National Aquarium in Baltimore, last year helped push the AutoHub area of ConsumerReports.org. For the latest assignment, media was bought on latimes.com, usatoday.com and washingtonpost.com.


The banner, box and skyscraper ads will publicize the online ticket-booking report, which was issued jointly with Consumer WebWatch, a grant-funded program of Consumers Union for setting standards in e-commerce.


"They're looking to accomplish two things: one, raise awareness that the report even exists, and, two, drive traffic to the unique landing page created for this campaign on which the report findings are detailed," Thomases said.


"The challenge we're helping them address is how to use the Web to achieve these objectives with limited resources," she said.


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