NEW YORK – AOL’s Platform-A announced the launch of a holiday-themed branding program for Schick Wilkinson-Sword that will integrate into Lemondrop.com, AOL’s new lifestyle destination for women aged 18-34. Lemondrop, http://www.lemondrop.com, is an irreverent, conversational website with content ranging from pop culture to politics. Launched in September, the site attracted nearly 2.6 million unique visitors in October, according to comScore Media Metrix. Lemondrop.com is part of AOL Living, http://living.aol.com, one of the top three women’s sites with more than 16.4 million monthly unique visitors and 477 million monthly page views. The site is one of more than 20 launches over the past year that build upon AOL’s broad publishing initiative to create experiences targeted at specific audiences.
During the one-month “Stocking Stuffers” campaign, Lemondrop.com editors will create original content that integrates Schick’s brand with posts such as “Best & Worst Guy Gifts,” “Dating Survival Tips During the Holidays” and “Genius Gifts from the Drugstore.” In keeping with Lemondrop’s editorial format, the content will refresh regularly and will include interactive, viral and blog-like elements to appeal to the site’s highly engaged audience. The program launched on November 25 and will run through December 26, 2008.
“This is a perfect example of how Platform-A and AOL can leverage highly valuable editorial environments to help deliver key brand messages to targeted audiences. We’re creating a unique platform for Schick that lets them reach a desirable and engaged audience,” says Lynda Clarizio, President of Platform-A. “Along with AOL’s leading media properties, Platform-A brings unmatched strengths to the market – our ability to offer brand advertising at scale, performance advertising across multiple media and precisely targeted campaigns at scale. And we’re delighted to have the opportunity to work with a great company like Schick to help them deliver their brand message.”
“This highly tailored campaign will let Schick engage with one of their key demographic groups at a time when they are making gift buying choices,” said Kristin France, Associate Media Director for Mediaedge:cia, Schick’s media agency of record. “By working with Schick to weave their messages into the increasingly popular Lemondrop.com site, Platform-A is helping them reach the right audience at the right time with an effective and engaging message.”
Since Lemondrop launched in September, advertisers such as Kohl’s, JCPenney, and Braun have also developed customized integrated sponsorships.
Over the past two years, AOL has rebuilt all its key branded programming channels and launched over two dozen specialty sites to appeal directly to an increasingly fragmented online audience. As a result, AOL has seen steady growth in its audience and engagement. Unique visitors to AOL’s programming content sites grew 7% year-over-year to 54.3 million, according to the October 2008 comScore Media Metrix Report, and page views more than doubled, up 101% year-over-year to 4.2 billion, while engagement (total minutes) grew 51% year-over-year. In October, total minutes also reached an all-time high on AOL.com, http://aol.com, growing 27% year-over-year as the site opened up many of its features to third-party content providers. In addition, many of AOL’s sites rank No. 1 in their categories, including Asylum, http://asylum.com, Black Voices, http://blackvoices.com, Music, http://music.aol.com, StyleList, http://stylelist.com, and Television, http://television.aol.com.
To date, Platform-A has fully integrated its sales forces and developed one insertion order and other processes to streamline ad buying. In addition, Platform-A has accelerated its product development efforts with recent launches including Spot Marketplace, enabling advertisers to bid on non-reserved inventory across AOL’s Web sites; PubAccess, a self-service interface enabling Web sites to place their inventory for sale in Platform-A’s third party display network; audience targeting across Platform-A; and the creation of a 300 x 600 ad unit across AOL’s homepages and co-branded sites.
Platform-A, AOL’s advertising business, is the industry’s largest digital advertising platform, offering the most comprehensive suite of marketing solutions, powered by the Web’s best advertising technologies. Platform-A includes AOL’s leading media properties – AOL.com, AIM, MapQuest, and more – and Advertising.com’s third-party networks. Platform-A also includes TACODA’s audience insights and behavioral targeting; Quigo, a site- and content-targeting solution; ADTECH, an international digital ad serving business; Third Screen Media, a mobile ad serving network; and buy.at, an affiliate marketing solution. Platform-A currently has operations in the United States, nine countries across Europe, including Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the UK, and in Japan through a joint venture with Mitsui. Learn more at http://www.platform-a.com.
Mediaedge:cia (MEC) gets consumers actively engaged with clients’ brands, leading to positive awareness, deeper relationships and stronger sales. Our services include brand and consumer insight and ROI, communications planning, media planning and buying, interaction (digital, direct, search), sport, entertainment and cause partnerships, retail consultancy and Hispanic marketing. Our 4,500 highly talented and motivated people work with local, regional and global clients from our 250 offices in 84 countries. We are a founding partner of GroupM, WPP’s media investment management group. To find out more go to: www.mecglobal.com.