Partners Promotes Times Online

Partners & Simons’ audacity helped the shop land an ad assignment for The New York Times Web site.
When executives at the Boston agency saw an ad for the site that they believed was well below the standard of the revered newspaper, “We said, ‘This ad does not deserve to have a New York Times logo on it,'” recounted account director Tony Cotrupi last week.
Cotrupi and agency principal Tom Simons then contacted the client and proposed new ads for the Web site. The shop was hired in January to execute an ad campaign, which breaks today.
Susan Hunt Stevens, the client’s director of marketing, said she liked Partners’ “way of working with people. They understood a complicated message” and, through their work for clients such as Charles Schwab and Ziff-Davis, demonstrated their expertise.
A series of print executions pose a question on the minds of many company executives: “Can advertisers invest safely online?” A subhead reads, “In this new Internet world, some of the old rules do apply.”
The ads, which contain mostly body copy, stress the client’s reputation as a “premier advertising vehicle” and invite readers to contact sales representatives to take advantage of “the most sophisticated registration database and targeting infrastructure in the business.” The newspaper’s logo is shown at the bottom of each execution, with “on the Web” added underneath.
Although the online community is like the wild West, with sites popping up and vanishing just as quickly, Cotrupi said, the Times brings credibility to the medium.
The site itself allows advertisers to target specific audiences by age, gender, ZIP code and income. “It provides a whole new level of accountability in terms of being sure ad dollars are being spent wisely, and the ads are reaching the right people” Cotrupi said. “This is really a model for the future.”
Supported by five online banners set to break next week, print ads are running in such publications as Adweek, Advertising Age, Industry Standard, Red Herring and Upside. The client is handling media planning and buying. Billings were estimated in the high six figures, according to Cotrupi.
Simons and creative director Jeff Billig are responsible for art and copy.
Previous ads for the site had been created in-house, Stevens said.