Helio and Buzzd Mobile Web Site Partnership

Helio – youth-oriented mobile carrier – has announced a partnership with mobile site provider Buzzd to launch a new local nightlife search site. Helio’s new service will offer a mobile Web site (linked from the home page of the carrier’s browser) allowing users to search for bars, clubs, and restaurants in major cities. Data queried in Helio’s new search will come from current Buzzd partners, specializing in event/entertainment information services, including Flavorpill, TimeOut, and Citysearch. The service, which will be ad-supported, will also bundle-in real-time “event feeds” with night-specific deals and pricing for respective hot-spots; updates will range from how long lines are to the current mood of the bouncer. Think informational social networking (ie; “the hostess told me one hour…and it’s been like threeeee!)

Currently the service requires users to provide location or street intersection. Helio, however, is looking to pull GPS into the mix, since Helio handsets are already equipped with the technology. Then bar-hoppers wont have to know their actual point-A vicinity (as some, peculiarly, do not) to be directed to point-B. As location-based mobile services are becoming more accessible and widely-used, I expect this new Buzzd powered service will be a hit among Helio’s youth oriented demographic (ie; those who adore all of the elements outlined above; cellular devices, social networking, night-life). Chitika has already added real-time mobile technology into our mix; and plan to venture further in the mobile arena soon! 

What do you think about location-based mobile services?

By Tessa Rudd, Strategic Partnerships Coordinator – Advertising Media Division

ABC’s TV to Internet convergence even more successful than I thought?


By: Karla Escolas

“I hope Dharma comes out with diet Cola soon”

I didn’t think I’d be going into more detail about ABC’s successful promo during the season premiere of ‘Lost’ last Thursday evening, but Robert Seidman from TV by the Numbers posted some interesting web data of Flyoceanicair.com that was provided by Hitwise. Robert says that the ratings to the promo by ABC weren’t as successful as he thought due to the decrease in traffic to the originally promoted site Flyoceanicair.com. However, not only do I disagree I have actually realized the promo was even more brilliant than I originally thought. The decrease in traffic to Flyoceanair.com is completely expected since the site itself contains nothing but pretty clouds and flight attendants. People that are still going to Flyoeanicair.com are going out of curiosity or because they don’t know better; “Losties” like to share what they think (there are hundreds of forums with thousands of discussions on theories, etc.), and when something interesting leaks, they flock. In this case people are going straight to Find815.com because it starts a mysterious story where you can help an as-yet-unknown man find his missing girlfriend. ‘Lost’ fans are taking it as some sort of spoiler from the producers or hoping it has something to do with what will happen soon in the show; neither of which we know yet. This probably would explain the sudden spike in traffic to Find815.com and not Flyoceanicair.com. So I guess this wouldn’t make for good convergence to the original site that we saw on TV but not only was ABC able to grab the attention with this commercial, they were then able to get the website within the website MORE traffic than the original promoted site! Why is this impressive? Let take for instance the “10-second rule”. You have 10 seconds to get your audience’s attention, so you had better make your point or forget it – you lost them. Not to mention if you ask them to click through to a site, you’ll lose 50%, then ask them to click through again, you lost 40%, maybe more. So dare I say that this promo was twice as successful that I had thought?

Advertisers Do The Super Bowl Shuffle


By: Karla Escolas

“A sucker for anything funny”

The votes are in for everyone’s favorite Super Bowl commercial, and although most people favored the Budweiser Clydesdale as America’s favorite underdog, everyone seems to agree that most commercials relied solely on the “wow” factor to get everyone’s attention. Last week I discussed ABC’s successful attempt to direct viewers to the web; now, you would think that after spending millions of dollars for ad space during the Super Bowl more than 6% would have also attempted to direct viewers online. They also did not connect the ad to their brand pages on social networks like Facebook. Most advertisers instead invested in search advertising. My choice for the best Super Bowl commercial was not only funny, but it made a very important point: even the smallest flaw can derail what you are trying to accomplish, big or small. This is something Chitika believes in when publishers are deciding how to monetize the traffic to their pages. Chitika gives you full customization control so nothing gets in the way of earning your potential revenue; if you are not in charge of the ad products on your pages, you may be missing out on a chance to cater to your audience.

Were any of this year’s Super Bowl commercials able to catch your attention in more than one way?

Chitika | Pulse: Super Bowl Loses Ad Budgets to Internet


By: Tessa Rudd


According to Internet Marketing News Watch, the, “US Internet advertising revenue will grow from $16.9 billion in 2006 to $31.3 billion in 2011,” which reflects an estimated compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 13.5%. The power of branding on the internet is well reflected by the Apple brand. While Apple stayed out of this year’s Super Bowl ad line-up; the brand’s popularity among online consumers did not waiver. Out of Chitika‘s top-50 products ranked in the past week, Apple’s brand represents 20%; and thereby represents an impressive 31% of relative total clicks generated by the top-50.  

Despite an impressive audience reach and it’s illusive advertising industry prestige, televised Super Bowl commercials remain risky ventures. Following last year’s Super Bowl, Garmin received negative publicity after being named the worst among scores of Super Bowl ads broadcast. 

TV to Internet Convergence: How successful is it?


By: Karla Escolas

“I’ll never fly Oceanic again!!”

If you were you among the millions tuned into last night’s long-awaited return of ABC’s hit drama, Lost, then during the show you saw a commercial from Oceanic Airlines alerting you to “stay tuned” for special information. As a huge ‘Lost’ fan myself, I knew this was something worth waiting for. However, the show was over and the commercial for Oceanic Airlines didn’t actually air until 45 minutes after the season premiere ended, during another show! And I am 100% sure that many true ‘Lost’ fans would know that as well. 😉

So finally what it turned out to be was a short promo (fake obviously) promoting that Oceanic Airlines “will take you to places you’ve never imagined.” Then flashed a website: FlyOceanicair.com. This whole thing was a brilliant idea because people who are fans of ‘Lost’ are known to obsess about any missing clues they can find. So what this did was cause a lot of people to go to the website right away; I know this because I tried to, but couldn’t access the website for about 15 minutes because it was so busy.

This was a perfect example of a successful PC and TV Convergence. This method is also used during highly-viewed events like the Super Bowl. During the 2007 Super Bowl, advertisers used the last 15 minutes of the game (prime time) to get viewers attention by directing them to websites, and they were successful. According to Bizreport.com, “During the game results showed that web traffic averaged around 160,000 visitors per minute, as opposed to an average of 80,000 in the previous two to three weeks. During the last fifteen minutes of the game the visitors per minute rate was at its highest at 282,546, the majority of which were from the U.S.!” This is useful information for publishers who not only should be keeping up with whats hot online, but on TV. What makes it even more important is with TV, you need to keep in mind the time-sensitivity factor. Plan head and keep up to date with what is going on around you.

Come back next week and vote for your favorite Super Bowl commercial!

Chitika’s Mission: Possible | iPhone Giveaway


By: Tessa Rudd

Chitika went to this year’s CES with every intention of making it unforgettable like we do with so many events we attend. Our initiative at this year’s CES was to network with our current publishers and advertising partners, and also to meet-up and chat with attendees who wanted to learn more about Chitika. To stir things up a little, our theme at this years’s CES was, “Mission: Possible.” Our aim was to hand out fifty ‘Go-Phones’ (AT&T cellular phones) to attendees and exhibitors who we connected with.

We relayed the following mission to our chosen ‘agents’; “Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to turn this Go-Phone into an iPhone. We warn you, Agent, this mission is easy – it’s totally possible. Switch on the phone, access the contacts list, text code word: CHITIKA to Headquarters. We’ve recruited 50 agents for Mission: Possible. You must text to succeed.”

Our agents (as well as Jeff and myself) had lot’s of fun carrying out “Mission: Possible”. Our agents all diligently texted-in the secret code to headquarters, hoping their Go-Phone would turn into an iPhone. Mission: Possible successfully ended on Jan. 25th with two winners! Chitika would like to thank all agents for fulfilling the mission.

Let’s all congratulate iPhone winners:  Nicole Tehan of Ketchum in New York, NY, and Gundeep Hora, of www.cooltechzone.com!

What’s Next for Chitika? Make sure you look for us at eTail2008!!!

Protecting your credit card & your cell phone?


By: Karla Escolas

“I’m a speed texter”

In about 4 years you just might be protecting your cell phone the same you would your bank or credit cards. One-third of Japan is already making contactless payments using their cell phones and by 2012 between 8-30 million customers in North America will be too, projects a report by technology research firm In-Stat. This immediately suggests a security issue to me. How many of you have lost or badly damaged your cell phone? For me, it’s been more than one in the past 6 years. By 2012 cell phones will either be the size of credit cards, or bigger and bulkier. If contactless payments are the future of cell phones, which do you think will be better – smaller phones (easy to hide) or larger (harder to steal or lose)?

Posted By: Karla Escolas, CRM/Marketing | “The Buzz Girl”, Chitika, Inc.

What’s it like working at Chitika?

Exciting, challenging, and fun!

We believe in the “Work (not Hard but) Smart and Play Hard” mantra. Our head quarters, also fondly known as the Chitika Village, is located in the Marlborough Technology Park, a campus like environment with 85 acres of park filled with water fountains, pools, and spacious offices. Our offices are filled with pool, air hockey, and foosball tables, Ninetendo Wii, in house movie projector, fitness balls and tons of other fun stuff. Don’t be surprised if you see a penguin wearing sun glasses greating visitors! We also don’t hesistate to take the time off to organize and have fun at company parties, picnics, outings, games, movies …

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Chitika Pulse – Gaming Brand Buzz

Do expensive corporate branding efforts and promotions, such Microsoft’s 2008 Xbox initiatives, influence gaming brand preference among consumers? Demand for gaming hardware and software has been consistently high on Chitika’s network as of late. Surprisingly, Sony—not Microsoft—dominates as the most popular overall gaming brand on Chitika’s network (representing gaming hardware and software collectively). The Sony brand accounts for 45% of the relative top thirteen gaming products ranked on Chitika’s network in the past week. Microsoft’s Xbox 360 comes in as second most popular brand, representing 28.07% of the relative top five.  

Chitika’s system does however report Microsoft to be number one among online consumers when it comes to gaming software. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warefare, Halo 3, and Rainbow Six : Vegas, constitute 46.32% of the relative top eight gaming software products ranked. Chitika’s online consumers also favor the Sony brand when it comes to gaming hardware (consoles and accessories). Sony’s Playstation PSP, Playstation 40 GB, Playstation 80 GB, and MSX-M2GN 2GH Memory Stick Duo Pro account for 71.93% of the relative top-five gaming hardware products ranked on Chitika’s network over the past week.

By Tessa Rudd, Account Executive – Advertising Media Division

NEW! Valentine’s Day Category for eMiniMalls

Familiar with Chitika’s product categories? There are 44 different categories you can choose from that make your life easier when customizing your eMiniMalls code. When you choose one of these categories your eMiniMalls will automatically display products from that category. Now our “Seasonal Specials” category is updated with some great gifts for Valentines Day for both men and women. You have 17 days till Valentine’s Day to promote some great gift ideas to your visitors; all you have to do is:

1. Login to your Chitika account.

2. Click the “eMiniMalls Code” tab

3. Select the “Seasonal Specials-Valentines Day” category and copy your code!