MSN to Roll Out New Ad Units Across Network

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Microsoft Corp.'s MSN division is a month away from launching new online advertising formats with an unnamed current advertiser willing to be the first guinea pig.


Two new ad units, one a skyscraper variant and the other called Fly-Out, will run across all MSN online properties, including MoneyCentral and HomeAdvisor.


The new units extend the current crop of online ad formats approved recently by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a board seat of which is occupied by MSN.


"We think they're a great first step, but we believe that with our technology and expertise, we can create more value for our advertisers," said Mike Siegenthaler, lead marketing manager at MSN, Redmond, WA.


Siegenthaler, who was in New York attending the Jupiter Online Advertising Forum, said the new units were created under the umbrella of NGAP, or the MSN Next Generation Ad Products. The Microsoft team working on its XP operating system helped in creating the units, he added.


Of the two, the rectangular skyscraper improvises the current model out in the market. It has three scroll buttons surrounded by the message. Running the mouse over the button brings new content across the banner. Users click click-through or simply mouse over the next scroll button.


The Fly-Out banner, also a skyscraper, is more creative. If the mouse is scrolled over the banner, an ad rolls out across the screen and on the content. Within seconds, it shrinks back.


"The idea is to expand the creative space without being intrusive," Siegenthaler said.


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