Saturday, May 02, 2009

inVentiv Ad Agency Palio launches Innovative New Web Site

SARATOGA SPRINGS, NY, May 1, 2009­–Imagine landing in the middle of a company's virtual logo, or brandmark—Palio's to be specific. What do you see? A fortress against ordinary thinking? An enclave for behavior-changing ideas? A meeting place or piazza where history is made?

Today the agency launched its new Web site (, which takes viewers on an exploration of the destination that is Palio. As the agency celebrates its 10th year in the business, they've set their sights on getting people to take the time to discover the power of ideas and original thought.

The site may make some uncomfortable because it forces us to slow down. The Saratoga Springs, New York advertising and communications agency is trying to change the way people interact—less about how fast something is or can be done, more about the thinking behind the actions. "We're trying to create a richer experience, a deeper connection to the ideas that drive us," said Guy Mastrion, chief global creative officer. "There needs to be a place that allows this to happen, and that place is Palio.

And the possibility to exchange ideas is built right into the site. Visitors log on and choose an avatar of a historic persona/icon to ensure they are part of the discovery process. As visitors explore the rooms—watching videos, reading ads on the walls, reviewing case studies—they are encouraged to engage with others they encounter by opening up dialogues and sharing ideas.

The idea behind the unique site revolves around Palio's desire to tell its story in a deeper, more meaningful way. Metaphorically, what could get deeper than being dropped inside a company's brandmark? As the hallmark of Palio's brand, the logo not only reflects the vibrancy of the agency and the passion of its people, but also the way in which they strive to take their clients’ brands to a higher level—to enable them to break away from the pack and make their own moment in history.

“Our logo has an organic quality that is a bit unexpected and speaks to the artisanship of what we do and our willingness to drive original thought. It was the force that drove the development of the site,” said Mastrion.

Also having an impact on the creative vision for the site was Palio’s print campaign, which brought the quality of Palio's logo evolution to life in a different way, departing from Palio’s now iconic launch campaign. The campaign features the agency's definitions of Slick, Hardwired, Street Smart, Diva, and Yes Men. "We used the logo and how we define the words above as inspiration and challenged the site developer, Ignite Health, to create a Web-based brand experience that not only reflects ideas behind both, but also uses the latest interactive technology, which deepened the understanding of the Palio brand. Ignite helped create an unforgettable experience for the new site. They used a combination of the latest Web technologies to create an immersive destination for visitors to interact with each other as well as explore a 3-dimensional environment where they can experience Palio,” said Mastrion.

“We used sophisticated Flash action-scripting in conjunction with a Flash Media Server to allow site visitors to move around this virtual logo via keyboard or mouse and see, as well as chat, with other users as they move around the same environment in real time. One of the key components to the overall experience of the site is that it allows people to actually meet and interact with one another,” said Les Yates, director of motion graphics at Ignite Health (

Each room within the logo explores a key department within Palio narrated by a key Palio leader:
  • Diva: Mike Myers, president, discusses how each voice has an equal say and an equal stake in success.
  • Globalista: Guy Mastrion discusses the agency's global approach to building brands.
  • Slick–Todd LaRoche, executive vice president/managing director of creative, discusses how the agency is really excited about ideas because it’s the ideas that matter.
  • Yes Men: Dan Bobear, executive vice president/managing director of client service, discusses how a good strategic partner will lead clients to the tough answers by asking the tough questions along the way.
  • Street Smart: Bob Mason, executive vice president/managing director of brand strategy, discusses how brand strategy is about bringing the insight to the work.
  • Hardwired: Andy Smith, executive vice president/managing director of global operations, discusses the organic process the agency has developed to ensure delivery of its best work.
One of the added benefits of the site is the opportunity to receive the Provocateur, the agency's premier online thought piece that compiles up-to-date marketplace information that engages and gets people thinking. All visitors have to do is fill out the online form.

“Literally and figuratively, Palio has become a destination for marketers­—unique in location, culture, and thinking,” said Mike Myers, president of Palio. “With agency partners throughout the world, we are creating truly global marketing solutions for our clients. We do our homework, take risks, raise our clients’ expectations, and stand for great work. What client wouldn’t want that passion and energy behind their brand?”

Palio, an inVentiv Health (NASDAQ: VTIV) company, is a full-spectrum advertising and communications agency headquartered in Saratoga Springs, NY, that excels in brand creation that changes the way people think with execution that will Never be For more information on Palio, visit

buzz this

Friday, May 01, 2009

Recruiting Gen Y In A Web 2.0 World

By Dan Schawbel / Mediapost
Friday, May 1, 2009
Out of all the generations, Gen Y is by far the largest, grossing approximately 80 million strong. Quick to adopt new technology, members of Gen Y have inhibited social networks for years now, as early adopters. Social networks have already transformed our society, and there's no doubt that Gen Yers are at the forefront of this social revolution and evolution.

MediaPost reports that there are 87% more online social media users now than in 2003, with 883% more time devoted to those sites. The fastest growing demographic are those 35 years and older, which means that there are even greater opportunities now that social networking is mainstream.

One of those opportunities is corporate recruitment. Companies were once dependent on their websites and job boards, such as, to recruit new talent. Since social networks have become increasingly popular, at a low cost to companies and with stronger databases than most job boards and corporate websites, companies are starting to turn to these sites to find their next hire. In order to compete for the top candidates, no company can neglect social networks, where they can find passive candidates with ease, using their current employee base as support.

Companies need to be where their potential hires are and understand that Gen Yers are handcuffed to the Internet. "Smart companies that want to hire the best talent recognize this and speak the local language of social media," says David Meerman Scott, author of World Wide Rave. Whether it's Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube or blogs, companies have to become social media literate, understand their recruiting goals, target audience and, most of all, participate in a meaningful and authentic way.

Just registering for social network accounts isn't enough to have Gen Yers want to work for your company. "You need to be active in the social networks like Facebook and Twitter where millenials hang out," explains Rick Burnes an Inbound Marketing Manager at HubSpot.

Companies should be building Facebook pages and Twitter accounts that bring their companies to life, including videos of employees talking about their experiences and pictures from their offices. They need to be proactive in connecting with Gen Yers by engaging in conversations that are already happening online.

It's time for companies to get creative if they want to win the war for talent, even in this recession. "Young people trust their friends and want to connect around values and interests -- so think about hosting a "bring a friend" event to meet the peers of your employees," says Marci Alboher, author of One Person/Multiple Careers.

Recognizing that peers are connected through social networks, companies can create viral videos and other pieces of interesting or entertaining content for Gen Yers to digest and become interested in working for them. In this new digital frontier, creativity, content and community will triumph. Companies that get engaged today, will not be left behind tomorrow.

buzz this

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Coke Taps YouTube, Facebook For Sprite

by Karl Greenberg, Apr 17, 2009 04:37 PM

source: Mediapost (

You may not know who Katie Vogel is now, but if Coca-Cola's Europe division for Sprite has some success with a new mashup of viral/ reality show/ music/ advertising/ entertainment, you will.

Vogel is a singer and songwriter from the UK tapped by Coca-Cola to debut globally in a YouTube reality show called "Green Eyed World" ( The program also debuts a new kind of content marriage between Facebook and YouTube.

The 52-week program, via FullSIX Group and its Brooklyn, N.Y. division, tracks Vogel's life, relationships and her music career as she hits the Big Apple to try her luck -- with help from the beverage giant. Tapped after a London audition series, Vogel will appear in a weekly five-minute episode. There are five monthly "seasons" slated for April, June, August, October and December, with Vogel doing video blogs and other social media in the months between.

The deal between YouTube and Facebook allows viewers to engage in live dialogue with Vogel when possible, and with each other from within the live YouTube video window itself and on Facebook. Stafford Green, head of digital for Coca-Cola Europe, says the customization is new to the two social media platforms. The dialoging takes place within a green (un-branded) "hot button" on top of the video. If one clicks the hot button without being signed into Facebook, a pop-up window allows a sign-in directly from the YouTube screen. One can also interact with the program from an iPod Touch or iPhone.

The effort is supported by a range of marketing campaigns, including outdoor and indoor ads and special packaging in different countries, live events, artist showcases in New York and the UK, promotional merchandising and potential broadcast.

Green says the program started in Europe and went global from there, as did Coca-Cola Europe's Coke Zero game, an interactive video that lets viewers push soccer balls through hoops. He adds that the current pre-launch video on "Green Eyed World" was introduced with no media spend, and with buzz generated from participants' own contact lists. "Katie has a couple of thousand fans," he says. "I have my contacts, and Damon [Crepin-Burr, group creative director at FullSIX] has his."

He says the company's research prior to the launch suggested that doing a big initial media launch would backfire. "A 'big bang' launch doesn't make it credible and you get spike in interest that dies down. We want good organic growth." He said the strategy worked because there were initial glitches. "In the first days, the number of views was stuck at 314. The counter was wrong."

That initial episode -- "Episode Zero," as Green calls the currently running pre-launch -- introduces Vogel and shows her saying goodbye to her parents as she prepares to leave for New York to pursue music. But the boyfriend, who shows up late to the goodbye dinner at Vogel's home, is really an actor, and the ensuing scene of tears and recrimination as he tries to convince her not to go is actually a re-enactment. "But Katie's tears were real," says Green.

"A 'reality remix' is the closest thing we can figure out to call it," says Green. "It's a little like 'The Truman Show,' as we wanted to put in actors to spice things up a bit, but we are finding the more credible we can make it without actors and actresses, the better it is."

The work-in-progress applies to Sprite marketing as well since Green wants to keep branding sub rosa. "As you can predict, I've had interesting conversations in the company as most traditional brand managers want to put the Sprite name over everything and have [Vogel] drinking Sprite. But what we have learned is that that kind of branding will alienate viewers.

"Where Sprite can have a role to play in the story we will do it; if there isn't a role we won't. The actual story itself is closer to the brand ideal of Sprite, which is around choices in life, that the choices you make are genuine and real. That makes sense, but we are not pushing a big tag line."

Sprite brand managers across Europe are looking at the program, with Denmark mulling "Katie" billboards and Coca-Cola's Eastern Europe division considering cans with her picture.

As for the media buy and the YouTube partnership with Facebook, Green says it was possible because he could ensure a strong media buy throughout the year. "The media budget for YouTube and [owner] Google has been centralized out of a single European budget," he says, adding that the company is considering television. "It's an idea we had from the very beginning because we wanted the program to be [platform] agnostic."

buzz this

Kaiser Family Foundation adds online global health gateway

source: epharm5
A new set of online resources from the Kaiser Family Foundation will provide U.S. policymakers, nongovernmental organizations, journalists, and others with health policy information and analysis. The free resources will anchor a new global health gateway at the Foundation's main Web site. The gateway will include access to Kaiser's Global Health Facts database; fact sheets on issues related to the U.S. role in global health issues; a global health calendar with upcoming congressional hearings, government briefings, and other events; a library with key charts and graphics related to U.S. global policy; and a global health glossary.
A new Kaiser Daily Global Health Policy Report synthesizes daily coverage from more than 200 news sources from around the world about U.S. policy discussions and debates on global health.

buzz this

CDC using Twitter, Google for swine flu updates and tracking

source: Epharm5
Health monitoring agencies are turning to Twitter, Google, and other online sources to help them track swine flu. For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is using, an RSS feed, and podcasts to provide updates, reports Healthcare IT News. It's also using Google search queries to pinpoint possible outbreaks, tracking the frequency of search queries and the number of people with symptoms. Google Maps also tracks the flu, says the report. A recent study in the Canadian Medical Association Journal showed that analyzing recent online searches may help scientists predict disease outbreaks (ePharm5, 4/13/09). 
buzz this

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


The following post contains an invitation sent by Arnie Friede (McDermott, Will & Emery)


# # #


Colleagues and Friends:


Please join us, in either New York City, Washington, DC, or by phone, on Tuesday, May 12 at  10:00 a.m. Eastern Time, for an important video conference to discuss organizing a collective response to FDA's enforcement initiative on the use of sponsored links in prescription drug advertising, and, more generally, on FDA's overall approach to regulating the internet as a distinct medium of communication.   Meeting locations and other details are attached. 


The meeting is open to representatives from pharmaceutical companies, advertising agencies, internet media companies, trade associations and their individual member companies, and others who have a legitimate interest in the evolution of a responsible FDA approach to internet communication.  Attendees at the meeting will be asked to identify themselves, their affiliation, and their general interest in the matter.


Please RSVP to Arnie Friede by e-mail ( or phone ((202)756-8189).   You may share this invitation but we ask that all prospective attendees RSVP so that we may have a reliable list of participants.   We look forward to seeing you on May 12 at 10:00 A.M. Eastern Time in either New York or Washington, DC.


For more information, please contact either Arnie Friede or Bob Nicholas.    



McDermott, Will & Emery

(202)756-8189, e-mail:



McDermott, Will & Emery

(202)756-8170, e-mail:


buzz this

1 in 4 Hospital, Urgent Care Patients Influenced by Social Media

source: Marketing Vox
Original Article:

Social media impacts nearly 40% of recent hospital or urgent-care center patients, with more than half of 25-to-34 year olds reporting they are influenced by it, according to the Spring 2009 Ad-ology Media Influence on Consumer Choice survey from Ad-ology Research.

Maternity Patients Influenced by Social Media

One of the main reasons why this age group was so heavily influenced is because nearly 30% of their hospital visits are maternity-related, MarketingCharts writes. Of social media types, forums and discussion boards had a significant influence on 20% of 25-to-34 year olds who recently made a visit for maternity reasons.

This suggests hospitals should target this group with an online space where these parents-to-be can interact.

Direct Mail, Newspapers Influence Older Age Groups

At the other end of the age spectrum, respondents ages 55+ had the highest percentage of recent hospital or urgent care center visits and reported significant influence from direct mail and newspaper advertising. The most important factors for this age group were quality of care, availability of specialized services, and out-of-pocket costs.Other key survey findings:

  • Women accounted for approximately 60% of those who researched family doctors online.
  • Quality of care ranks the highest among patients as the most important factor when choosing a hospital or urgent care center.
  • Hospital/urgent care websites had the most influence on 18-to-24-year old patients (53.8%).
  • Of traditional media, TV had the most influence on all respondents (22.3%), followed by newspapers (21.9%).

"Progressive hospitals are already participating in social media through specific micro-sites, social networking, online communities, and targeted online marketing," said C. Lee Smith, president and CEO of Ad-ology Research.

"Urgent care and maternity provide excellent opportunities to connect with younger consumers, and social media is the way to engage this group," Smith said.

About the survey: The Media Influence on Consumer Choice survey is conducted throughout the year by Ad-ology Research to study online, traditional, and social media influence on buying decisions. For this study, Ad-ology surveyed an online consumer panel of 1,213 adults from January 5-8, 2009.

buzz this lends Rx alert service to elder care company

source: ePharm5

Online drug safety monitoring service is launching a drug safety service with elder care company Aging with Grace. The Rx Guardian online service provides people with personalized drug safety reports, alerts, and product recalls using real-time feeds from FDA and pharma companies. The partnership makes's medication safety information program available to the elder care community through Aging with Grace. Once registered on The Rx Guardian, members will receive a personalized safety report that checks medications for potential side effects, treatment duplication, drug-drug interactions, and drug-disease interactions. Members will also be e-mailed alerts and recalls based on the medications listed on their profiles.

buzz this

J. Lo teams with sanofi pasteur for whooping cough vaccine initiative

source: ePharm5

Jennifer Lopez is the spokesperson for a new March of Dimes and sanofi pasteur initiative against pertussis, more commonly known as whooping cough. The Sounds of Pertussis campaign focuses on educating new parents and families about pertussis in infants and encouraging vaccination. It features a Web site and series of TV and radio public service announcements featuring Lopez. The campaign also includes specific elements designed to reach the Hispanic population. March of Dimes and sanofi pasteur say Hispanic babies may be more susceptible to the disease. All of the PSAs have been created in English and Spanish, and the campaign also includes a four-part radio novela that will air on Spanish-language radio stations throughout the country.

An accompanying Web site,, provides e-mails featuring Jennifer Lopez and a video public service announcement as well as an audio recording that lets visitors listen to what whooping cough sounds like. sanofi pasteur makes the pertussis vaccine Pentacel. 

buzz this

Docs comfy with e-promotion, and many prefer it, says study

source: Medical Marketing & Media
author: Ben Comer
Sixty-seven percent of physicians had a positive attitude toward electronic promotional activities, up from 62% a year ago, according to an SDI study.
Additionally, 73% of the physicians surveyed for SDI's ePromotion Annual Study 2008 said pharma's electronic promotional activities (or ePromotion) were equal or superior to traditional face-to-face encounters.
“Through ePromotion, physicians have more time to review product information and review disease state information at their own convenience – at night time or on the weekends,” said Heather Alba, senior manager, promotional audits at SDI.  Other findings from the report include:
• Sixty-nine percent of the physicians surveyed participated in electronic promotional activities in the evening, outside of office hours.
• In 2008, the average amount of time spent by a physician on a single ePromotion activity was 18 minutes.
• Physicians ranked Merck as the leader in terms of the best ePromotion activities, followed by Pfizer and AstraZeneca respectively.
The study, which included feedback from approximately 1,000 physicians across 14 specialties, defined ePromotion in three categories: virtual details (promotions without live communication); video details (live online promotion or telephone-assisted internet browsing), and virtual events (seminars, CME and KOL events, web conferences and group discussions).
buzz this

Monday, April 27, 2009

New Report from Nielsen (April 2009): "Global Online Media Landscape"

The growing popularity of online social networking and video content is deepening web users’ engagement with the internet and is causing a dramatic shift in the global online landscape - both for consumers and for advertisers, according to a report from The Nielsen Company, which was distributed at the ad:tech conference in San Francisco.

Major highlights from the Global Online Media Landscape report regarding online video and social networks.

  • The number of American users frequenting online video destinations has climbed 339% since 2003.
  • The unique audience for online video surpassed that of email in November 2007.
  • Time spent on video sites has shot up almost 2,000% over the same period.
  • In the past year, unique viewers of online video grew 10%, the number of streams grew 41%, the streams per user grew 27% and the total minutes engaged with online video grew 71%.
  • There are 87% more online social media users now than in 2003, with 883% more time devoted to those sites.
  • In the past year, time spent on social networking sites has surged 73%.
  • In February 2009, social network usage exceeded web-based e-mail usage for the first time.

    Download Nielsen's new report.

buzz this

twtpoll :: Which of the following URL shortening services offer the best tracking info and data visualization? (via @skypen)

twtpoll :: Which of the following URL shortening services offer the best tracking info and data visualization? (via @skypen)

Posted using ShareThis

buzz this