Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Science blogs as a vehicle for upscale advertising

Science blogs as a vehicle for upscale advertising



Financial Express via NewsEdge Corporation :

If great oaks from little acorns grow, a company called the Seed Media Group is hoping that its efforts in a fledgling field, blogs, will yield a forest. Seed Media, which produces science publications in print and online, is seeking to broaden its audience-and its appeal to advertisers by introducing a network of blogs, or Web journals, devoted to science and science-related subjects. The network is to be made available on a Web site, www.scienceblogs.com , that is now operating in beta, or test, mode. The Web site will initially bring together 15 blogs bearing names like Adventures in Ethics and Science, Cognitive Daily, Living the Scientific Life and Stranger Fruit. One of the blogs, scienceg8 (pronounced "science gate"), is part of Seed Media, and the rest are independent. In coming weeks, Seed Media is hoping to have as many as 30 blogs on the network. Seed Media will sell advertising on scienceblogs.com as it does in its magazine, Seed, which is published every other month, and on its Web site (seedmagazine.com).

The idea is to not so much to carry ads for beakers, test tubes and centrifuges as to attract ads from marketers wanting to reach bright, curious consumers who buy products like automobiles, books, cell phones, computers, liquor, music and watches. The blog network is a sign of the growing interest among media companies and advertisers in using new media for an old purpose: selling. Blogs in particular are popular, as companies advertise on them, post comments on them and even sponsor their own. Recently, Budget Rent A Car bought ads on 177 blogs, Audi of America on 286 blogs and MSNBC on 800 blogs. "Blogs are starting to play a pivotal role in science, both in exchanging ideas within the science community and enabling a conversation between the science community and the general community," said Adam Bly, president and chief executive at Seed Media in New York. The goal of the blog network is to offer readers and advertisers "the largest Web-based discussion about science and the role science is playing in our culture today," said Bly, who is also editor in chief at Seed magazine, which published its first issue last September. "

Expanding into digital media is an important part of our business plan, whether online, podcasting or blogs," Bly said. "It's an opportunity to surround our consumers whether at home, on the subway or at the office." In addition to the magazine Web site and the blog network, Seed Media also operates Phylotaxis (phylotaxis.com), a news aggregator devoted to what it calls "the space where science meets culture," which searches and browses continuously updated articles on science subjects. "This intersection between science and culture is something we've been very interested in for clients at our New York office such as Pfizer, Unilever and Estee Lauder," said Pilar Cortizo, planning director at JWT New York, part of the JWT unit of the WPP Group. -NY Times

<<Financial Express -- 01/30/06>>


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