Thursday, March 30, 2006

New iVillage pregancy, baby channel lets user personalize site

New iVillage pregancy, baby channel lets user personalize site

Women's online portal and media company iVillage has launched Pregancy & Baby Plus, a new channel for expectant and new mothers, it reports. All of the site's information is customized to reflect the user's pregnancy stage or baby's age. Users can personalize the program with a photo journal, week-by-week development calendars, personal profile, and interactive pregnancy journals and polls. The subscription-based service is available for $24 per year and also features how-to videos, online support from other mothers, and coupons. The site's multimedia content comes from the iVillage Parenting Network, including its pregnancy and baby magazines, and the Newborn Channel, its in-hospital satellite television network. iVillage was acquired by NBC earlier this month.,pbp,offline

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Pharma group adds upgrades, ad campaign for clinical trial site

Pharma group adds upgrades, ad campaign for clinical trial site

The International Federation of Pharmaceutical Manufacturers & Associations (IFPMA) has upgraded its clinical trials Web site and launched a two-month advertising campaign on Google and Yahoo!, IFPMA reports. With the new site additions, users can search for clinical trial data in English, German, French, Japanese, and Spanish, and more languages may be added. The Web site has also expanded its search capability, allowing users to perform searches with multiple criteria and by geographical area, says IFPMA. The ad campaign on Google and Yahoo! will provide a link to the new Web site to users who type clinical trial-related search terms into these engines.


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Pfizer sponsoring oncology Webinars with interactive content

Pfizer sponsoring oncology Webinars with interactive content

Pfizer is sponsoring online educational seminars in oncology treatment advancements through a partnership with the Georgia Society of Clinical Oncologists (GASCO) and Internet infrastructure provider Globix Corporation. The Webinars allow physicians to log onto the seminars from anywhere and feature streaming multimedia presentations with synchronized content such as PowerPoint presentations, text, images, or Flash animation, reports Globix. Webinars have covered "New Techniques in the Treatment of Prostate Cancer" and "Targeted Approaches to Renal Cell Carcinoma Therapy," and feature presentations from nationally recognized oncology experts.



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PointRoll, ePrize partner to bring branding to interactive ads

PointRoll, ePrize partner to bring branding to interactive ads

Rich media firm PointRoll, whose pharma clients include Wyeth, Novartis, and GlaxoSmithKline, has teamed up with ePrize to develop a full-service, interactive advertising promotion solution, according to the companies. ePrize develops and manages interactive online brand promotions such as sweepstakes and games and will integrate its promotions into the existing PointRoll products that generate consumer interaction. By integrating ePrize into PointRoll's rich media ad platforms, consumers will be converted quickly into the promotion. For example, the partnership will allow users to sign up for the campaign within the ad unit, which removes several registration steps and will increase campaign response, the companies report. As part of the partnership, ePrize's services include registration, instant-win games, sweepstakes, creative, real-time database reporting, and follow-up e-mail marketing.


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WSJ: Personal patient sites create closed user-generated content



WSJ: Personal patient sites create closed user-generated content


Personal patient Web sites, like and, are gaining popularity, according to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ). The sites, which are operated or contracted by hospitals, allow families and patients to chronicle their illnesses and share experiences with an online community. CarePages sites aren't accessible via online searches and users choose who does or doesn't have access. Caringbridge, the other main provider, has more than 36,000 active sites and has logged about 207 million visits, says WSJ. Caringbridge partners with sponsors, most of which are hospitals, according to the site. Many hospitals provide their own personal Web pages for patients and some offer bedside Internet access, says WSJ. Click the link below to read the full WSJ story.






Health: Sites Give Patients and Families Online Lifelines to Loved Ones

When Sean Brame marked his 10th birthday this month, well-wishers around the globe celebrated with him.

Their point of contact: a patient Web site updated daily by Sean's mother, Carol Brame, who has chronicled Sean's yearlong fight with and recovery from toxic shock.

On April 22, 2005, four days after Sean arrived at Pennsylvania State University Children's Hospital in Hershey, Pa., his mother sat down at a computer and typed: "We faced the facts today that we will never have the same boy we had last week, but no illness can steal his heart, his smile or his love for others."

Over the next five days, doctors fought to save Sean's life, amputating both of his legs below the knee, his right hand below the wrist and all but his index finger on his left hand.

For Carol Brame, the Web site was her lifeline to friends and family. She isn't alone. Patient Web sites have mushroomed over the past few years. Some are run by hospitals and others, like the CarePages service Carol Brame uses, are contracted by hospitals. The company, which started in 2000, has contracts with 450 health-care facilities nationwide and traffic to the sites spurted 400% last year. provides private and secure sites that are fully integrated with the hospital or clinic. The pages can't be found with a Google search, and patients and families pick who gets access and can block unwanted visitors. The other main provider,, partners with 50 sponsors, such as medical centers, hospitals and other organizations, including one community fire department. The nonprofit has more than 36,000 active sites, and has recorded some 207 million individual "visits." In 2005, 83% of its funding came from people who used the service.

Many hospitals, seeing the benefits and popularity of personal Web pages for patients, provide their own and in some cases offer Internet access at the bedside.

For Carol Brame, the CarePages Web site has been a lifeline. At the urging of hospital staff, Mrs. Brame set up a CarePages site to let others know about Sean's condition. The middle-school teacher from York Haven, Pa., says she simply didn't have the time to respond to dozens of daily phone calls and emails from concerned family, neighbors, friends and colleagues.

The response was far beyond what she expected.

The site kept Mrs. Brame's brother Lt. Col. Richard Denison Jr., a minister on duty in Iraq, abreast of every surgery. "Carol, all our soldiers and airmen in Iraq are praying for Sean," Rev. Denison wrote in one of the earliest messages.

As word of the site spread, the community responded. An anonymous donor sent pizza for the nurses after Mrs. Brame wrote about their dedication. The local Orange Crush distributor delivered three cases of the soft drink after a mention that it was Sean's favorite. A local hot-wings restaurant owner raised $12,000 with a concert for Sean. And the Harrisburg City Islanders soccer team surprised Sean at the hospital, vowing to help the young athlete back on his new prosthetic legs. "I would just mention it on the CarePage and it would get done, " Mrs. Brame says.

For parents with chronically ill children, the sites can be therapeutic. Lori Todaro of Carlisle, Pa., recently set up a CarePages site about her son Nino, 7 years old, who had been diagnosed at 16 months with periodic fever syndrome, a disease that affects the immune system, and is a patient at the Children's Inn at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Md. "It's a lonely feeling having a sick child," she says. "To be able to log on and pour out your heart and get response back makes you feel not so alone."

In 2003, Laura Mullen of Gaithersburg, Md., set up a Caringbridge site after her son, Kevin, now 14, was diagnosed with Hodgkins lymphoma. "You're exhausted, because you've been up whole day with your child," Mrs. Mullen says, "you can only send just so many emails at a time."

Some hospitals are taking the idea further, providing bedside Internet access. The Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tenn., installed computers in every patient room and wireless connections in its new building, opened in 2004. Sallie Hussey, the hospital's director of community and family services, says pediatric patients can build and update their own secure Web sites without leaving their beds.

Aziza Shad, director of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology at Georgetown University Hospital, which partners with, believes the sites do help. " It's a fabulous tool that keeps the patient happy and helps to keep families connected to each other," she says.



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Survey of 5,000 consumers gives glimpse into attitudes, behavior

Survey of 5,000 consumers gives glimpse into attitudes, behavior

Advertisers looking for a way to peer into the life of the average British consumer have a new resource. The United Kingdom-based Institution of Practitioners in Advertising gave 5,010 adult British consumers a time-based PDA diary to record, every half hour for a week, their actions, opinions, and reactions to media. The research uncovered consumer trends such as online communication habits, preferred media channels, lifestyles, behavior, opinions, and attitudes toward direct mail. For example, the study found that of the available methods of written communication between consumers, only 13% is conducted with pen and paper, 49% is sent by e-mail, 29% implements SMS (Short Message Service) text, and 10% is via online instant messaging. The survey also found that 31% of respondents find advertising intrusive and only 14% like the idea of interactive ads.




The IPA (Institute of Practitioners in Advertising) today revealed the results of its long-awaited TouchPoints Survey; a week in the life of a representative sample of the GB adult population during the latter part of 2005.


The survey, conducted by Taylor Nelson Sofres (TNS) questioned 5,010 people through a substantial self-completion questionnaire and a PDA (personal digital assistant) time-based diary that collected data every half hour for a week on how they were spending their time, their opinions, and the role of media in their lives.

TouchPoints is the most ambitious piece of media research undertaken for a generation and will impact on how commercial communications are planned in the future. Its primary objective is to give communication strategists a consumer-centric planning tool which analyses how people are using the increasingly wide range of media available to them and how this usage fits in to their lifestyles. It has been designed as a stand-alone survey and to be integrated with other media research currencies and surveys such as BARB and the NRS (June 2006). It also provides the first commercial benchmark for all media, including for the first time SMS, direct marketing and the internet.


A snapshot of the research shows that consumers are leading distinctive and individual lifestyles and that TV viewing still dominates over other media including the internet:

Multi-Media Usage


Changes in written communication: From pen to palm pilot

  • Only 13% of all written communication is now using pen and paper; 49% is via email, 29% via SMS text, 10% via Internet Instant Messaging
  • 39% of written communication by adults aged over 65 is on paper; for 15-24 years olds it is only 5%. This younger age group favours electronic methods of written communication, 48% is SMS, 28% is email, 20% is Internet Instant Messaging
  • SMS is used more by women than men, accounting for 36% and 23% of their total written communication respectively
  • 29% of 15-24 year olds send in excess of 10 text messages a day; 7% send in excess of 20. 92% txt once a week
  • 70% of 15-24 year olds ignore all commercial text messages they receive
  • 25% of all mobile phone users (and 59% of 15-24 year olds) take pictures with their phones every month
  • SMS texting is almost as common as talking on mobile phones (Talking is 54.9%).

Textual intercourse: what we do whilst we text

  • Whilst texting, 32% of 15-24 year olds are also watching TV, 18% are also listening to the radio, 10% are also browsing the Internet and 6% are also reading

A comprehensive media mix

  • TV remains the lead medium for the majority of adults - this is true for all age groups and is irrespective of internet access
  • The media hierarchy in hours for all adults between Monday and Friday is: 3.9 television, 1.3 hours radio and 0.8 internet. On Saturday and Sunday this changes to: 4.5 television, 1.5 radio and 1.0 internet
  • 27% of users of games consoles also read a daily newspaper

Television vs the internet

  • On a typical weekday a 15-24 year old home Internet user spends 2 hours surfing the Internet - this rises to 2.4 hours at the weekend and averages 14.8 hours for the week. 33% of this group are spending 4 or more hours watching television on an average weekday. The mean for this group is 3.2 hours on an average weekday rising to 3.9 hours at the weekend. Commercial television accounts for 75% of viewing
  • Internet usage is highest in the South East

Through the letterbox

  • The average individual receives 8.5 pieces of advertising mail each week, 4.9 (57%) are personally addressed and 3.6 (43%) are 'random' pieces of mail
  • 8% of all adults receive personally addressed advertising mail on an average day, this rises to 21% of adults who shop for groceries online
  • 45% open the majority of ad mail that they receive
  • Only 4.8% respond to ad mail that they receive from companies
  • 55% of adults are happy to receive information from companies they have bought products and services from
  • 53% of individuals indicate that they are annoyed by the amount of ad mail they receive

Consumer Lifestyles

Quality time with the family

  • On an average weekday, a two parent family unit with children spends 21% of its time as a complete family unit, peaking at the 9pm watershed. On the weekend, this figure rises to almost double (39%), peaking at 7pm on a Saturday and 9.30pm on a Sunday
  • Watching TV remains the core shared activity with in the family home
  • Middle managers spend less time with their children than senior or junior work colleagues

Working 9 to 5?

  • During the course of "the working day", the unemployed are happier than individuals in full-time employment. Contrastingly, once the working day is completed, the employed show greater levels of happiness
  • Adults in full-time employment consume 8 hours of media during the day (a mix of TV, radio, internet, reading). This rises to 9 hours amongst the unemployed and the balance of TV viewing rises from 46% to 65%

Who is the most stressed?

  • People in Greater London (32.7%) are the most likely to be stressed because of pressure of work. Those in the South West (20.6%) are the least stressed

Who is the most optimistic?

  • People in the North West are the most optimistic about life (68.5%) and would rather concentrate on their own lives rather on things they cannot control


  • 30% of employed adults work from home on occasion; 16% do so at least once a week, 7% on a daily basis
  • Those working from home are less likely to have children than employees working in an office


  • 70% of 15-24 year olds say they 'could not live' without a mobile phone
  • Only 12% of mobile users never use their phone for texting (49% of these are over 65)

Shopping online

  • Shopping for groceries over the internet is highest in East Anglia at 14% followed by Greater London and the South East at 13.5%. It is lowest in the North at 2.6%

Consumer Behaviour

Time is money

  • 30% of the population are prepared to spend more to save time with this being true for those aged 15-24 (39%) and the least true for those aged 65+ (21%)
  • People in Greater London are the most likely to say they are willing to spend money to save time (38.6%)

Corporate responsibility

  • 83% of the population would not deal with a company they couldn't trust: the older the individual (92% of 65+) the more true this is (70% of 15-24's)

Consumer Opinions

Attitudes to ads

  • 31% of the population find advertising intrusive, 15% do not
  • Those aged over 65 (41%) are more likely to find advertising intrusive than the younger generation (27%)
  • 89% of the population feel some adverts appear so many times that they become irritating
  • 63% of the population would be happy to have advertising on the BBC channels in return for scrapping the licence fee
  • Only 14% of individuals like the idea of interactive ads - This rises to 29% among those aged 15-24
  • Men are 1½ times more likely to like the idea of interactive TV ads than women

Social graces

  • 51% of the population believe there is too much bad language on TV, 43% think there is too much violence, 29% deem there to be too much sex. This is felt most strongly by women and the elderly

Political thought

  • 72% of adults want to keep the pound rather than switch to the Euro
  • 84% of the population think that it is wrong for the Government to ignore public opinion between elections

Lynne Robinson, Research Director, IPA said: "The IPA TouchPoints Hub Survey is designed to act as a new and critical link in the channel planning chain which is long overdue and absolutely vital in today's multi-media world. It gives us a unique view of how media impacts our lives, how we spend our work and leisure time and what our prevailing attitudes are. The findings of the first TouchPoints Hub Survey confirm some things we already suspected: that families still like to spend time relaxing together in front of the television. But it's also given us some new thoughts: that although all age groups are embracing technology, it's the young who are absolutely wedded to it."

For further information:

Lynne Robinson, IPA Media Research Director tel 020 7201 8200

Jim Marshall, Chairman of the IPA Media Futures Group and Chairman of Starcom UK Group tel 020 7190 8007

Note to editors

The TouchPoints Hub Survey is a major project from the IPA Media Futures Group (MFG) and is available to all sectors of the business from 23rd March 2006.

To subscribe to TouchPoints, which has a varied rate card, please contact Mark Cross, TouchPoints Commercial Director on 01438 820939 in the first instance.

How the survey was conducted

The 5,010 participants in the survey each completed two tasks, firstly a substantial self-completion questionnaire and secondly a PDA based time usage diary which collected data every half hour over the course of a week.

Self-Completion Questionnaire
The self-completion questionnaire investigated what communication channels the participants' use, how they use them and what they thought of them; plus their attitudes to a wide range of issues, general activities and shopping habits plus a wide range of demographics.

PDA Diary
The PDA time based diary asked participants to record their activities on a half hourly basis over the course of a week. Questions asked were:

  • Where they were?
  • Who they were with?
  • What their main activity was?
  • What media they were using?
  • How happy / sad they felt.

The two datasets provide a valuable snapshot of consumer life in Great Britain and how this interacts with media in particular.

The Founding Media Agencies are:

  • Initiative Media
  • Media Planning Group
  • MediaCom
  • mediaedge:CIA
  • MindShare Media UK Ltd
  • OMD UK
  • PHD Media Ltd
  • Starcom Worldwide
  • Universal McCann
  • Vizeum
  • ZenithOptimedia Group Limited

The Founding Partner Media Owners who backed the initiative include:

  • AOL
  • BBC
  • Chrysalis Radio
  • JCDecaux
  • Guardian Newspapers
  • ITV
  • News International
  • SMG Group
  • Tesco Media Services
  • Wanadoo

First subscribers include:

  • All Response Media
  • archibald ingall stretton…
  • Bartle Bogle Hegarty
  • BLM Media
  • John Ayling Associates
  • J Walter Thompson
  • Manning Gottlieb OMD
  • Publicis
  • Walker Media


buzz this adds symptom checker to online tools adds symptom checker to online tools

The new Symptom Checker on lets users search for the most common causes of their symptoms. The site, which accepts advertising from pharma sponsors, features 28 adult symptoms and 17 child symptoms. Online searches for symptoms typically yield too many results, so the tool helps users sort through their symptoms and narrow down the possible causes, reports the Mayo Clinic. Users can click on their symptoms and add specific characteristics to further identify their problem. For example, for adult abdominal pain, users can specify the type of pain they feel, such as whether it's burning or crampy, what triggers the pain, what relieves it, and what other symptoms accompany it. Based on the specifications, the tool will produce a list of possible causes of the pain, and each one can be clicked for in-depth features. There are links to about 200 articles, according to the site.


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Wyeth launches Spanish-language depression support program

Wyeth launches Spanish-language depression support program

A new program from Wyeth delivers education and support tools to Spanish-speaking patients who are depressed and taking Effexor. People who enroll in the Spanish-language program, Dialogues: Time to Talk, will receive educational materials developed specifically for patients taking Effexor. There is also an accompanying Spanish-language Web site and a telephone-support service with bilingual nurses. According to Wyeth, Hispanic patients may face language barriers with non-Spanish-speaking caregivers and English-only patient support tools. About 8 million U.S. Hispanics suffer from depression. Although Hispanics are significantly more likely than non-Hispanics to be depressed, a Surgeon General's report suggests they may not receive adequate treatment, according to Wyeth.


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J&J is exclusive sponsor of CNN program on Web, TV, podcasts

J&J is exclusive sponsor of CNN program on Web, TV, podcasts

Johnson & Johnson (J&J) will be the exclusive sponsor of CNN's Welcome to the Future, a regular interstitial series examining the way technology is changing American life, reports Brandweek. The short programs will run on CNN, Headline News, and CNN Airport Network. In addition to television, the J&J-sponsored features will be available online on the Welcome to the Future Web site. J&J will also be the exclusive brand tied to weekly podcasts of Welcome to the Future features, says Brandweek. Quarterly prime-time Welcome to the Future specials will also run. The series premieres this week. Go to the Web site to learn more. According to Avenue a/Razorfish, pharmas can also leverage podcasts to deliver sales rep information.


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OPA: One In Four View Web Video Weekly

OPA: One In Four View Web Video Weekly

by Wendy Davis, Thursday, Mar 30, 2006 6:00 AM EST

ONE IN FOUR WEB USERS watch online video at least weekly, while almost half of all Web users view online video at least once a month, according to a new study by the Online Publishers Association.

The study, based on a February survey of 1,241 Web users ages 12 to 64, concluded that watching videos online is becoming routine. Almost seven in 10 Web users--69 percent--told researchers they have viewed video online at least once, while 46 percent said they do so monthly, 24 percent weekly, and 5 percent daily.

Almost two-thirds--65 percent--of those who view Web video at least once a week are male; the average age of the weekly-plus viewers is 33; and 85 percent of that group has high-speed Internet access at home.

What do they watch? Entertainment and news are among the most popular offerings. Fifty-eight percent of those who watch online video view movie clips or trailers at least once a month; 57 percent watch humorous clips at least once a month; 56 percent of online video watchers say they view news and current events videos at least once a month; and 47 percent view music videos.

When asked what type of content they found most appealing, online video watchers said the most attractive content was video that could only be found online--and not TV, DVD, or other media. The study was conducted in partnership with Frank N. Magid Associates, Inc.



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Monday, March 27, 2006

Report: 36M users will watch video on mobile phones in 2009

Report: 36M users will watch video on mobile phones in 2009    

An eMarketer report predicts that by 2009, 35.9 million U.S. users will be watching video on their mobile phones. Despite the surge in popularity, the number of users willing to subscribe to paid premium services will remain small at less than 10 million, eMarketer forecasts. In 2006, only 3 million users will watch any sort of video on their mobile phones and only 300,000 to 400,000 users will have adopted paid services. According to the report's author, marketers will need to determine whether mobile television will be a submarket or will grow into the next big mass market, reports There are more than 160 million Internet-enabled cell phones already in circulation today and close to 5 million Americans who now own video-enabled handsets, according to MediaPost Behavioral Insider. A survey last month showed that 40% of brands in Europe are already using text messaging campaigns and 89% plan to market with mobile phones by 2008.

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First Web database of Asian language cancer materials launched

First Web database of Asian language cancer materials launched 

The first searchable online database of Asian-language cancer materials was launched Friday. The portal is from the Asian American Network for Cancer Awareness, Research, and Training and the American Cancer Society, and is supported by the National Cancer Institute. The tool is designed to help Asians and Pacific Islanders with limited English-speaking abilities access information about reducing their cancer risk. Users will be able to download scientifically reviewed cancer information that is translated into more than 12 Asian and Pacific languages. There are also English-language materials that are culturally tailored for Native Hawaiians. Cancers covered include breast, cervical, colon, liver, lung, and stomach. Go to the site <>  to learn more.       

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Lung Cancer Alliance launches blog for online community

Lung Cancer Alliance launches blog for online community

Recognizing the blogging trend among consumers, the Lung Cancer Alliance, whose partners include AstraZeneca, Eli Lilly, Genentech, and Pfizer, has launched a blog for the lung cancer community. The blog's content consists of Current Events and Policies Affecting Lung Cancer, according to the Web site. Current threads include the death of Dana Reeve from lung cancer and a welcome to the blog. According to the site, the blog will eventually publish original content from the Lung Cancer Alliance's State Committees. Other resources on the Alliance's Web site include patient support programs and a clinical trials matching service, which helps patients find trials in which to participate. Visit the blog <>  to learn more.

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