CrossMedia Forum: Execs Fight it Out for Advertiser Budget

NEW YORK – Put representatives of eight mediums on a panel, have an advertiser toss them a challenge and then see them make a case for their share of the ad pie. That’s what market researchers Dynamic Logic and its Millward Brown parent did yesterday at Dodger Stages in midtown New York.

The event, called the “2006 CrossMedia: Night of the Media Heavyweights,” attracted hundreds of New York advertising, marketing and media professionals.

They assembled to hear reps from broadcast/network television, cable, direct marketing, Internet, magazine, newspaper, outdoor and radio present their media plan to briefs put forth by executives from Hewlett-Packard and Ocean Spray Cranberries.

In the end, 200 selected members from the audience voted on the medium that made the best case.

HP’s brief to reach its audience brought forth multiple suggestions. Ellen Oppenheim, executive vice president and chief marketing officer of Magazine Publishers of America, recommended targeting to an audience based on passion and not just demographics: a magazine’s forte, in essence.

Alan Kuritsky, CMO of the Direct Marketing Association, suggested a multichannel approach. The combination included viral marketing, guerilla marketing and magalogs.

Jason E. Klein, president/CEO of Newspaper National Network, said his medium – both print and online versions – offered local, grassroots marketing. He cited newspapers’ sponsorship of concerts nationwide as an example of engaging with a local audience.

Next up was Greg Stuart, president/CEO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau. Online was not only cost-effective, he said, but also engaged the audience and built a deeper relationship. HP could use the Internet for tech support, downloads and community features like photo sharing.

“Three years ago I was the only one talking about the Internet,” Mr. Stuart said. “Now I notice everyone is.”

Radio, for its part, offered the sought-after 18-to-34 age demographic, said Mary Bennett, executive vice president of marketing at the Radio Advertising Bureau. She said radio is about emotion. Listeners’ loyalty also extended to their local radio stations’ Web sites.

Mike Shaw, president of sales and marketing at ABC TV Networks, represented broadcast. But he tooted his network’s horn more than he did his industry’s.

Still, he said “nothing gets the word out like network television.”

Stephan Freitas, chief marketing officer of the Outdoor Advertising Association of America, pointed out that most consumers today are out of home. So he recommended a grab-bag of media: post card racks, mall kiosks, posters, ads on streaming video in 13,000 cinemas, ads in airports and commuter rail stations, sampling and billboards on highways.

So which medium did the audience think was the most compelling fit for HP? The Internet. Forty-eight percent of those with voting machines thought so. Broadcast, cable, radio, DM and newspaper followed, in that order.

What was missing from that consideration set? Public relations. A telephone invitation to this writer to cover the event is proof that it works.

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