Software Lets Marketers Change Banner Ad Text on the Fly

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Poindexter Systems, formerly ru4, has released software that lets marketers change text in banner ads on a moment's notice. beta-tested the software, called Poindexter 1.1, during the recent Grammy Awards to change ad text based on the performers who emerged during the event's telecast.

During singer Britney Spears' performance, GetMusic used a banner featuring one of her stock photos alongside her first name. While the photo remained throughout her routine, a GetMusic marketing employee manually inserted other text phrases such as "Is she hot?" to encourage viewers to click through.

When Spears was done, preset photos of other performers came up in the ad, and GetMusic manually changed the text during their performances as well.

Poindexter 1.1 learns viewer information such as purchase history, language and bandwidth for ad targeting purposes.

The software reads data in a viewer's cookie, combines it with the data a Web site has collected on the viewer and then selects an ad. The viewer data it collects and uses include:

o Ad viewing history, including conversion to sales and abandonment.

o Dates and times of visits by individual viewers.

o Viewers' media plug-ins for audio, video, etc.

o Viewers' browser type and version.

o URLs visited prior to entering a marketer's site.

Poindexter 1.1 also lets firms create rules that segment viewers when they enter a Web site. For instance, a shoe retailer can program the software to make a Spanish-language offer for a shoe to Spanish speakers who have abandoned shoe purchases in the past month. The retailer can offer the same type of shoe that was abandoned.

Firms using the software will get reports that show how ads are performing, including how many viewers visited a page with certain ads, how many clicked through and how many abandoned the ad. and also have tested the software and have seen click-through rates jump 200 percent, said Jonas Lee, CEO of Poindexter, New York.

Lee said the firms originally began testing the software for free, but they have since become paying clients.

Poindexter 1.1 is priced on performance and runs from 50 cents to $2 per thousand ads. E-mail campaigns using all of the software's features are also available through the firm.

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