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Christmas Brought To You By... Coca-Cola?

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Patrick Luckett
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on Thursday, 20 December 2012
in adMarketplace News











“Haul out the holly!”

“Santa Claus is coming to town.”

“So you betta watch out . . .”

for all those last minute sales?

Has Commercialism taken over the holidays? Or has it been that way for so long we’ve forgotten?

Widely believed to have originated from the tale of St. Nicholas, a monk famous for his gift giving, the legend of Santa Claus arrived on American soil in the late 18th century. Called Sinter Klaas, a Dutch nickname for Sint Nikolaas, he maintained his tie to good works and gifts, often being portrayed in images with stockings filled with toys in the background.

Nast Christmas 1865 Harpers
While this early Santa retained his affiliation to charity, his image was still undefined. He was depicted as everything from a small, scary elf; a tall, gaunt, burly looking man; a Catholic Bishop; and even a Viking Hunter wearing bloody animal skins. This grim and unappeasable Santa was popularized through the somewhat grim drawings of Civil War artist, Thomas Nast.

In the 1920's, Coca-Cola started using Santa Claus in their advertisements, still portraying him in the solemn manner of Nast — but Coke was about to give Santa a makeover.

In 1931, Archie Lee, an executive from D'Arcy Advertising Agency, advised Coca-Cola to promote an approachable, wholesome and symbolic Santa Claus in their holiday campaigns. Enter Haddon Sundblom, an illustrator from Michigan. Inspired by Clement Clark Moore's 19th century poem, A Visit From St. Nicholas — more commonly known as T'was the Night Before Christmas — Sundblom created the grandfather-looking, plump and wholesome Santa we know today.
coca-cola santa and sprite boy 1949-610x800
Introduced in 1931 in The Saturday Evening Post, the new and improved Coke pushing Santa soon made appearances in Ladies Home Journal, National Geographic, The New Yorker and many others.

Following up on their Santa success, The Coca-Cola Company introduced Sprite Boy in 1942. This small elfish boy, kindled the popularity of the Santa elves and increased the awareness of Coca-Cola in young children. Strangely, it wasn’t until 1961 that Coca-Cola introduced Sprite as a beverage.

The Coca-Cola Company was not the only company to realize the marketing opportunities of the holiday season. In 1939, a Montgomery Ward copywriter by the name of Robert May was asked to write a short christmas story to be handed out as a promotional piece during the busy holiday season. His sweet short story about a misfit reindeer sold over 2.5 million copies that first year. However, it wasn't until 1949 that Rudolph's fame skyrocketed — when May's brother-in-law, songwriter Johnny Marks, wrote the lyrics to the jingle still sung today.

And Thus Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer DID go down in history!


Will The FTC Protect Web Publishers From Google's Forced Exclusivity?

Posted by
Adam Epstein
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on Wednesday, 19 December 2012
in adMarketplace News

The largest antitrust investigation in 15 years is expected to conclude soon. Its outcome will impact, for decades to come, how Web publishers generate revenue, which in turn, dictates what Web content is free and available to consumers.

Since June 2011, the Federal Trade Commission has been investigating whether Google used its monopoly power in violation of antitrust laws.

While most of the attention on the investigation is focused on Google’s favored positioning of its own products in its search results, there is more to the FTC’s investigation than search bias.

The FTC is also looking into Google’s use of exclusionary practices to stifle competition and underpay its search partner network. This component of the FTC’s investigation focuses on Google’s AdWords for Search program, which is the primary way many Web publishers make money. Here, the FTC’s case is stronger than its case against Google for manipulating search results.  

Here is how AdWords for Search works: Google places advertisements against searches entered on publisher partner sites. When visitors click on these ads, Google gets paid by the advertiser, and pays their publisher partners a percentage of that revenue.  Almost 30% of Google’s advertising revenue comes from its publisher network. 

The FTC is investigating whether Google is using its market dominance improperly when it requires publisher partners to show Google ads exclusively. If a publisher wants to show any Google ads to their visitors, they can only show Google ad. And since Google dominates the search advertising market, Web publishers are essentially forced to agree to its terms or give up Google revenue altogether.

The more that Google faces competition, the more publishers get to keep of the ad revenue generated by publishers on their own sites.  Of course, Google has a strong incentive to limit competition so that it can keep more for itself and share less with publishers. That is exactly what Google has done. 

Publishers ought to be able to offer their search traffic to more than one advertising partner so that they auction their advertising inventory to the highest bidder. This is a common practice in every other advertising medium – including display advertising, with the rise of real-time bidding auctions. Can you imagine if newspapers or TV stations could only show ads sold from a single broker?

Web publishers would see increased revenue if there was a competitive, real-time market for their search traffic. In turn, they could use this additional revenue to produce more content or provide more free services profitably. This would benefit the consumers of Web content, who make up their online audience. Competition would also bring increased innovation and transparency in the search network advertising marketplace - which would benefit advertisers as well.

The European Commission also understands the danger of Google’s exclusivity requirements:

Google imposes exclusivity obligations on advertising partners, preventing them from placing certain types of competing ads on their web sites, as well as on computer and software vendors, with the aim of shutting out competing search tools.”

A competitive search partner advertising market would benefit the Internet ecosystem.  The FTC doesn’t need to pick winner and losers -- that should be left to the free market. However, the FTC should step in to ensure that dominant companies like Google don’t use exclusive agreements and one-sided contracts to prevent Web publishers from participating in a free market.

The FTC has an opportunity and obligation to protect web publishers, and the consumers who enjoy their advertising-supported content, by preventing Google from forcing online businesses into stifling exclusivity agreements.

More Time, More Sales? Retailers Attempt to Push Holiday Season Earlier Than Ever Before

Posted by
Patrick Luckett
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on Monday, 19 November 2012
in adMarketplace News

cyber mondayfinal


It was in 1863 when Abraham Lincoln set the official date for Thanksgiving as the last Thursday of November. The proclamation lasted 75 years until 1939, when the last Thursday of November fell on the 30th. Afraid that just 24 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas was not enough time for consumers to get their shopping in, American retailers asked President Franklin D. Roosevelt to push Thanksgiving forward one week. In an effort to help a struggling economy in the midst of World War II, FDR changed Thanksgiving to the fourth Thursday of November.

This gave consumers additional time to participate in the holiday shopping season. Quickly, this idea that more time equaled more sales took hold, and created competition between stores. The battle began to be the first to open on Black Friday.

Today Cyber Monday takes the competition a step further. This first Monday after Thanksgiving, which gives online shoppers an easy platform for comparison shopping, has taken over Black Friday by 29% in online sales. In fact, last years Coremetrics report noted a 33% increase in sales from over 10 million Cyber Monday customers. 

In line with John Ray's famous proverb the early bird catcheth the worm, retailers are focusing in on digital advertising much earlier than usual.'s eHoliday Survey found 61% of online retailers started their promotions by Halloween. The survey also notes that 35% of shoppers choose online shopping because of free shipping, a promotion that 3 out of 10 retailers will begin touting much earlier than last year.

How has holiday shopping changed for you over the years? Do you clip coupons and wake up early on Black Friday to take advantage of the deals in-store, or do you try and get your shopping done through online retailers? 


Another Day, Another Feature: Tech Target talks adMarketplace

Posted by
Patrick Luckett
Patrick Luckett has not set their biography yet
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on Thursday, 08 November 2012
in adMarketplace News

Adding to all the excitement this week, an article in AdWeek and Ad:Tech NY,  Tech Target raised the bar further with their interview with adMarketplace CTO, Mike Yudin. The piece details adMarketplace's history and touches on our latest platform, Advertiser 3D.

Yudin had this to say about Advertiser 3D:

Our platform has been specifically built for managing this complexity that these [other] companies have not solved. Our system gives you data, gives you controls [and] differentiated pricing based on performance of your ads across all these sources."

It is a complex process to turn big data into relevant advertisements in real-time, but Yudin is a strong advocate of keeping things as simple as possible. When asked about our company's mission statement, he responded:

We're in the business of helping good companies make more money, acquire more customers and grow their businesses online."

Click here to view the full article.

Interested in finding out more about Advertiser 3D? Contact us via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or call (212)925-2022.

AdWeek Features adMarketplace

Posted by
Patrick Luckett
Patrick Luckett has not set their biography yet
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on Wednesday, 07 November 2012
in adMarketplace News

This is an exciting week for adMarketplace. In the midst of preparing for AdTech NY, adMarketplace was featured this week in AdWeek's Digital Issue. Focusing on search performance outside of search engine results pages, the article cites case studies and interviews with current advertisers and adMarketplace CEO, James Hill.

Steve Gibson, Associate Search Director for Garage Team Mazda, had this to say about his experience with the adMarketplace platform:

adMarketplace was able to contribute performance at scale to our SEM efforts. September was Mazda's strongest month to date this year and adMarketplace played a very important part."

Hill is quoted describing the new dashboard more specifically:

Buyers can now know what they’re getting. They know where their ads are being placed. We solve the problem of being a transparent platform.”

Cick here view the full AdWeek article. 

Interested in finding out more about Advertiser 3D? Contact us via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , or call (212)925-2022.