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Exile on 7th Gets Interactive Work

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Exile on 7th here has been tapped to handle interactive duties for Heald College and MyFamily.com, according to agency president Alan Burgis. Combined billings are estimated at $3 million.

The 3-year-old, 30-person ad agency will be responsible for managing all online creative, analysis and media duties for Heald College. The agency previously worked with the client on a project basis; the account was awarded without a review.

Publicis & Hal Riney, San Francisco, which handles Heald College's offline ad business, had done interactive work for the school in the past.

Based in San Francisco, Heald College is a regionally accredited institution with 11 campuses in Western states, including California, Oregon and Hawaii. The nonprofit college offers 18-month associate degrees, 12-month diplomas and six- to nine-month technical certification training programs.

MyFamily.com, an online genealogy network, selected Exile after a review that included a number of undisclosed interactive shops. The Provo, Utah-based client previously handled online advertising in-house.

Initially, Exile will work on search-engine optimization and preliminary creative. Burgis said the creative workload is expected to increase over the next year.

When asked about taking on a dot-com after the Internet bust, Burgis said, "Some business models work better than others online, and [MyFamily.com's] is perfect for the Internet." He compared MyFam ily.com to eBay, another Exile client, which has dropped the ".com" from its moniker. "Ebay is so successful, no one says it's a dot-com anymore," Burgis said.

MyFamily.com provides a host of services for families and genealogists online. Visitors can create family-tree Web sites and search more than 1 billion names in over 3,000 unique databases.