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In the hyper-competitive online news race, MSNBC.com had fallen to #2 behind CNN. Our job was to extend their “Fuller Spectrum of News” campaign into the digital realm. We started with the rather “duh” thought that a news organization should use the actual news of the day to sell itself.
Lots of banners are set months prior to launch. But these designs integrated RSS feeds for a “ripped from the headlines” effect. Our developers spent a lot of late nights making it fly right, but the resulting ads sure got noticed. The analytics revealed great engagement and click-thru numbers.
We figured that people who like being in the know might like to see the latest news when they walked by their computer. So we created a customizable and content-rich screensaver – a sneaky, new little channel for digesting the news and driving traffic back to MSNBC.com.
Bringing the RSS-fed banners (as well as Mac and Windows screen savers) to life required us to collaborate closely with MSNBC.com’s tech team as well as publisher sites. We clearly defined requirements with both, got agreement and went to work.
The RSS banners realized a .61% click-thru rate.
In the first month of the campaign, MSNBC.com achieved a record number of unique visitors.
100,000+ screensavers were downloaded in the first 60 days after release.