Tuesday, September 23, 1997

echoMEDIA's new product, Sesame-Ad

OPEN SESAME! echoMEDIA demoed its new product, Sesame-Ad, to a select audience Tuesday morning (9/23) at The New York Yacht Club on 44th Street. Based out of Rhode Island, this club a natural choice for this company's demo.

If you've ever walked down 44th Street between 5th and 6th Avenues, you may have noticed odd bubble shaped windows jutting out over the sidewalk. Originally designed in 1901 by Whitney Warren, who studied at the L'ecole Beaux Arts and went on to design Grand Central Station, whose Model Room has these windows.  Inside, under these windows are soft deep red velvet and leather banquettes, perfect for sharing a cup of tea in the morning or cocktail in the afternoon.

Of course there is nothing dainty about the interior this room. Was this space designed by Wm. Randolph Hearst? It could have been for "Oppressive," "Massive" and "Domineering" are the words one might use to describe this two-storied room. Dark polished oak wood covered the walls, ceiling fixtures, and moldings. Nautical motifs including sea monsters, dolphins, and seaweed adorned most every fixture: a wood balcony on one side was detailed with light and dark painted green seaweed, 10' tall Caen stone (from Normandy) sea monsters flanked a large oil painting of ships at sea on the 47 ton fireplace. Heavy black iron chandeliers with coconut-sized frosted glass lamps speckled the ceiling and, while dark, couldn't hide the 30' oval brilliant golden-toned stained glass sunroof. Dark Teal fabric covered with halves of ship models covered the walls in addition to large models contained within even larger exhibition cases.

But enough about the impressive nautical room. echoMEDIA has hopes for Sesame-Ad to be the secret opening to a new wave of interactive-web advertising. This software delivers already made TV commercials on the web in either 1/4, 1/2, or whole page ads in child pop-up windows, or as interstitials. The user doesn't go away to a different site as with a banner click-through, or have the entire page blocked by an ad (with the exception of the interstitials).

You can see samples of this new exciting model at: Jumbo (one of the largest software, promo download sites) and Travelfacts.com (a 23yr. old company and one of the largest publishers of travel info on the web). Some current clients include: Kodak, Sandals resorts, Carnival Cruises, United Airlines, and USA Today.

Among the guests at this morning's preview was Katie Antheil
(kanthei1@rodalepress.com) of Rodale Press (http://www.rodalepress.com). Not focusing on the Amazon.com model, as that's a proven big competitor, Rodale has created various websites based on books they've published. Some sites are:
FatFreeLiving.com and Men's Health magazine (http://www.menshealth.com)

Introducing the panel and this product was Richard Fisher, Director of echoMEDIA. echoMEDIA was founded in 1995 and is based out of Newport, R.I. Fully owned by NetMaster now, echoMEDIA is traded on Nasdaq as NETZ, and is a major
player in the web advertising arena. Tom Burgess, President/CEO of echoMEDIA came up to speak and take us through the demo. WOW! Slick presentation.

This software will deliver the appropriate ad based on various user specifications. It will be delivered in any format you want, any length, has auto scheduling, and starts playing during the download of the webpage. Part of the software is the Campaign Manager, which can determine the frequency of the ads, target the audience by time, timezone, website, and ensure there are no
repeat ads -- if you so desire.

All of this wondrousness is served up from (quess what? -- that's right) the proprietary ad-server. This efficient machine not only serves up the ads but also generates a report in the structure you want.

(Appeared originally in @The Scene in the @NY newsletter)