*How2TV, Ask Jeeves Plan Co-Marketing Pact

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Rich media electronic customer relationship management solutions firm How2TV and question-and-answer search firm Ask Jeeves are set to announce a co-marketing and co-selling pact.


The deal would give both companies the ability to integrate self-help capabilities with rich media instructional content. It is designed to enable How2TV and Ask Jeeves to refer their customers to one another. The official announcement may come this week.


"Ask Jeeves is highly respected in the CRM space. Them selecting us validates our product and business model," said Henio Arcangeli Jr., president/CEO of How2TV, Los Angeles.


Under the terms of the deal, each company will promote the other's eCRM solutions to their clients. This co-selling pact will last for one year and will automatically renew unless one of the companies backs out.


Ask Jeeves' question-and-answer search technology and How2TV's interactive instructional video technology will be integrated for manufacturers to offer consumers a comprehensive solution where text questions will be answered with streaming audio and video, said Ning Ning Yu, vice president of engineering at Ask Jeeves, Emeryville, CA.


"It adds motion and sound to our how-to text," Yu said.


How2TV claims its rich media eCRM solutions can help manufacturers drive sales, slash product return and support call costs by educating both consumers and customer service representatives. The company creates Web-enabled promotional and instructional videos that instruct consumers on how to assemble, install and use new merchandise.


Arcangeli said Ask Jeeves will use his company's Training Pacs in its business-to-business arm to offer support to manufacturers.


Both companies need to seduce manufacturers in order to grow their businesses, Arcangeli said. Both companies will hype the other's technology when talking to clients and prospects.


"They will introduce us to their current customer base of manufacturers," Arcangeli said. "They'll tell them our products integrate well. When we go to our manufacturer base to sell rich media, we'll tell them Ask Jeeves has a question-and-answer technology virtually any manufacturer can use [in its eCRM efforts]."
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